4 ways to keep your landlords happy and win more instructions

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4 ways to keep landlords happy-min

Guest blog by Tom Mundy, COO at  Goodlord, a property lettings software that improves the renting process for agents, landlords and tenants alike.

Competition for landlords is fiercer than ever. Landlords are facing a raft of changes and will likely be reviewing their current services, which means providing them with an incomparable level of service will be essential to keeping them both in the market and on your books. The foundations of this service will be continuing to give your landlords the right advice and support to manage legislative changes; finding and retaining the best tenants, who will pay their rent on time and treat their landlord’s properties as they would their own home; and, ensuring landlords have the right insurance policies in place to protect them in a worst case scenario.

Keep abreast of legislative changes

Back in 2019, many were predicting a mass exodus of landlords, as legislation and tax changes took hold. Although the number of homes sold by landlords actually hit a seven-year low in Great Britain in 2020, increasing legislative pressures mean that nearly 30% of the lettings sector respondents in our Summer 2020 State of the Industry Report said they were concerned about legislation and compliance. This increasingly challenging environment provides letting agents with an opportunity to prove their value, because there will be a greater demand for industry professionals who can provide landlords with guidance and support – a fact reflected in the increasing number of landlords who are choosing to use professional letting agents rather than going it alone.

Landlords who have chosen to stay in the market are going to need to lean on property professionals more and more, for help with everything from tax advice and estate planning, mortgage solutions and property insurance, to understanding how important changes to the industry will impact them, such as HMO regulations and the changes to EPC regulations, which make it illegal to rent a property with an EPC Rating of F or G. Add to this the temporary six-month notice periods, and the processes to follow for right to rent and managing workplace risk during Covid-19 – the burden of compliance is only increasing.

This means it will be even more important for agencies to create secure, consistent processes where possible to ensure they’re keeping their landlords’ portfolios compliant – whether that be by automatically sending up-to-date How to Rent Guides and deposit-prescribed information, or updates to tenancy agreements in light of the tenant fee ban.

Helping your landlords stay abreast of changing legislation will go a long way towards allowing you to elevate your current offering to landlords and cementing yourself as their trusted advisor. This might ultimately prove a deciding factor as to whether a landlord decides to stay in the market and continue using your services, or even refers other landlords to your agency.

Find and retain the best tenants

A high turnover of tenants has traditionally been regarded as a good thing by letting agencies who have relied on tenant fees making up a substantial portion of their revenue.  However, this is no longer a viable business model after the Tenant Fee Ban, which is why many agencies are now trying to find quality tenants who want to stay in properties for the long-term.

For landlords, tenants with a long-term contract are more likely to treat the property with respect rather than deal with the fallout if they were to damage it through negligence. This extra care can mean your landlord’s investment is better protected. Landlords will also save money with longer contracts, rather than losing time and money finding new tenants. Even with void periods at only 21 days in England on average, that’s still 21 days with no income each time new tenants have to be found – a problem that a longer contract can help overcome.

Protect your relationship with your landlords

Rent protection insurance is one of the most important ways an agency can ensure they’re looking out for the best interests of their landlords, helping to protect landlords against the risk of letting out an investment property. It’s vital that letting agents ensure their landlords have rent protection insurance in place, and regularly take stock of their policies to ensure their landlords are properly covered.

Letting agents need to look for rent protection policies that will provide their landlords with appropriate levels of protection should their tenants default on rent and need to be evicted from a property. They should also find a policy that makes the claims process as simple as possible, and explain to their landlords what protection is included.

Offering your landlords a more comprehensive rent protection policy could cost them slightly more upfront, but it could also save them thousands of pounds – and be the difference between retaining or losing your landlord in the long run.

Get the support you need to provide the best service

Good letting agents will already be aware they need to maintain a high level of service to keep their landlords happy. However, they sometimes struggle to provide that service and keep up with the administration requirements of a large portfolio. That is why many agencies are now looking at the technology options available to help them manage some of that administration and let them focus on strengthening their relationships with their landlords instead. Choosing the best technologies, in addition to offering your landlords market-leading products and services, will help to set your agency apart and show that you’re serious about improving the services you offer both landlords and tenants.

Guest blog by Tom Mundy, COO at Goodlord, a property lettings software that improves the renting process for agents, landlords and tenants alike.


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