Saving you money! We may be in lockdown again, but the good news is that the Government is allowing the property market to continue operating, albeit with lots of new rules for everyone to comply with in order to keep people safe and avoid hefty fines. The situation is often so fast moving that DIY landlords can find the stress of trying to remain legally compliant extremely challenging. Handing over the management of a property to a professional agent could be a very shrewd and sensible move, particularly at this time. A good agent will be able to save landlords time, money, and stress, as well as helping to ensure that everyone concerned remains as safe as possible, and on the right side of the law
Limiting exposure During lockdown everyone has been advised to keep travel to a minimum and, where possible, to avoid mixing with people from other households. Landlords can minimise contact by arranging for an agent to market their property, and to allow them to arrange for socially distanced physical or virtual viewings. Since the first lockdown in March 2020 many agents have invested heavily in new technology, so that many of the procedures that are necessary to let a property are now able to be done remotely, but also very efficiently.
Free market appraisals If you are a landlord with a property to rent, make sure that you choose a reputable agent who has intimate local knowledge of properties in their area, and can also offer a broader perspective on the national market. This inside knowledge will help the agent to conduct a free professional market appraisal of your property and consequently ensure that your investment not only achieves the best, and most realistic rents, but also attracts good quality tenants who will be likely to remain in the property for long periods.
Trouble shooting During lockdown, tenants are inevitably at home for much longer periods than normal. This means that heating systems, white goods and other essential items within the property will be used much more than would otherwise be the case, and this can often result in a rise in the number of maintenance problems that tenants experience. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to find a contractor who is willing to come out to a property during lockdown, and it can potentially also be expensive. A property management agent will already have a list of trusted and reliable contractors that they can call on during an emergency, and who will charge a reasonable fee for any work that they do.
Skilled negotiating If a tenant is experiencing difficulties in paying their rent, an agent can negotiate with them on behalf of the landlord and communicate any problems that may arise. An agent can negotiate in such a way that they remove the emotion from the conversation and look at all possible solutions. Some landlords are in a position to be able to offer a slightly discounted rent during lockdown, whilst others are willing to carry over arrears until their tenant is in a position to pay, but the agent will always do their best to ensure that rents eventually get paid in full. At the time of writing, Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has announced that the current ban on bailiff evictions has been extended for six weeks until February 21st 2021. Belvoir is among many agents who are calling on the government to support tenants with loans to help ensure that rents can be paid, and arrears can be avoided.
Rental index Each quarter Belvoir commissions property expert Kate Faulkner to analyse advertised rents, as well as landlord and tenant trends across the UK. This information is an invaluable free resource for all property professionals as you can find out what types of property are most in demand, what rents are in your region, and what market predictions Belvoir franchisees are making for the following quarter. If any landlords are thinking of extending their portfolio, or reviewing their investments to ensure that they are receiving maximum returns, the Belvoir rental index can make very interesting reading that may help to influence any decisions. To access this information and receive more tips from industry experts simply subscribe via the LandlordZONE website.