One of the most important elements of renting out your home is finding the right letting agent in your local area. Your letting agent should ensure you achieve the maximum return on your investment, find the best tenants for your property, handle the different legal aspects and generally make your life as a landlord much easier throughout the tenancy. At Hancock and Partners, as letting agents in Chichester, we understand how crucial all these elements are for the success of a landlord. Therefore, we have collated some of our tips for how to choose a letting agent.
Letting Agent Initial Checklist
When looking for a letting agent you need an expert who can do the following:
- Provide a free, realistic valuation of the property and recommendations for increasing rental income.
- Complete tenant referencing and right to rent checks to ensure good quality, reliable tenants.
- Provide a comprehensive tenancy agreement.
- Participate in a government-approved tenancy deposit protection scheme.
- Complete an inventory – an in-depth report on the contents and condition of the rental property.
- Have membership of ARLA Propertymark, the UK’s professional and regulatory body for letting agents.
There are also a number of other aspects to consider when finding a letting agent.
What level of landlord support do you need?
Not all letting agents offer the same services. While some letting agents will simply introduce tenants, other agents like Hancock and Partners offer a full and flexible property management service including:
- Tenant screening
- Rental valuations and negotiating rental increases
- Rent collection and deposit protection
- Scheduled regular property checks
- Responding to tenant enquiries and organising maintenance jobs with trusted tradesmen
- On call 24/7 to handle emergencies calmly and efficiently.
Take your location into account
- Always select a lettings team based in the location of your property rather than where you live. A local expert will have full knowledge of all properties and roads in the area, enabling accurate valuations and fast responses.
How will the letting agent market your property?
Marketing your property is one of the most important initial aspects of the lettings service your agent provides, as this is what is going to help you entice the very best tenants. You should look for a letting agent with:
- Professional, visually appealing ‘To Let’ boards.
- Access to the latest industry marketing tools, including leading portals like Rightmove and Zoopla, active promotion of your property across their own website and social media accounts.
- High-quality photography, well written property descriptions, and a downloadable PDF brochure.
- Virtual viewing capability.
Good pricing advice
- A good local letting agent will understand what rent local property has achieved to date, the price ceilings of particular roads and more importantly, know what similar properties are achieving. If the property is valued correctly at the outset, you will find the best tenants in the shortest possible time.
- Regardless of your financial investment and initial outlay on decoration, carpeting, fixtures and fittings, it is important to take your local letting agent’s advice on market prices so that your property does not sit vacant for weeks or even months.
Access to local contractors
- One of the most time-consuming, and often stressful tasks for a landlord is finding reliable tradesmen to carry out any DIY and Maintenance jobs for the property. These come up more often than you think, so it is important to find a letting agent that has good contacts to help you with unexpected emergencies.
- Letting agents with a large property portfolio have a great relationship with many local businesses – including builders, plumbers, electricians and decorators. These expert professionals can be called on in an emergency and offer you the very best service at a good price. Your agent can assign the correct people for the job and ensure the work is completed to the highest possible standard.
Next steps for choosing a letting agent in Chichester
Once you have decided upon your letting agent, they will be there to support you throughout your tenancy and provide valuable peace of mind. If you decide to work with Hancock and Partners, you will benefit from working with knowledgeable property professionals who have up to 30 years’ experience in the local property market. We can make sure you achieve the right price for your property, find trustworthy tenants, and draw up a tenancy agreement which protects you and your property.
At Hancock and Partners, we are proud to have been part of the Chichester community since 1991 – during this time we have built up one of the largest local lettings’ portfolios. You can rest assured that every member of our senior team is also a long-term resident of the city – which means we know the Chichester district inside out.
As well as advertising the property online, at Hancock and Partners, we can also arrange virtual viewings. These allow potential tenants to take a ‘visual walk’ through the home, a process which has been adapted to conform with current Government guidelines.
You can call us on 01243 531111 and a friendly member of our Lettings team will be happy to assist you and answer any questions you may have. We look forward to hearing from you.