Is your Letting Agent any good, are they a member of the
Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA)?
When you seek out a good tradesman, you would ask them questions such as:
1) How long have you been doing this work?
2) What qualifications have you got?
3) Can I see some of the work that you have done?
4) How do I know you are any good?
5) Questions about price?
What I find strange is that when a new landlord comes across to us because they have had a bad experience with another agent, they have not asked any of these questions. At NGU Homelettings we all work hard and want to be the best in the industry. I personally pride myself on my work ethic, high standards and my relentless will to succeed and never give up. I work from 5:00am in the morning till 7:30pm at night. This work ethic from me and my staff has allowed me to answer these type of questions categorically:
Question 1. How long have you been doing this work?
Answer –We started the company in 2007 and we are landlords like you. We have over 150 properties that we own and we started NGU Homelettings because we felt that there was a gap in the market for a letting agent which was not just 9 to 5. We offer longer opening hours to allow more enquires to be captured and give personalised feedback to landlords when a property becomes empty. Operationally we have broken down the company into specific parts such as one person doing inbound rent, one person doing outbound rent, one person doing inbound maintenance, one person doing outbound maintenance etc. This allows each individual team member to be an expert in their field as opposed to the traditional letting agent model where people do everything okay rather than a specific role well.
Question 2- What Qualifications have you got?
Answer– We have committed to put every one of our staff members through the Association of Residential Letting Agents training program. At the end of the year every member of the team will have an industry recognised qualification. I do not know of any other letting agent in the North East which is committing to something like this. Only a handful of Letting Agents in the North East are a member of the Association of Letting Agents (ARLA)- we are obviously proud to be one of them!
Question 3- Can I see some of the work that you have done?
Answer-We encourage any new landlord to speak to us and come to our office so you can see the scale of our operation. We have 15 different team-members who are here to make sure your investment property is looked after. If you would like to speak to some of our current landlords to see what they think, please do.
Question 4- How do I know you are any good?
Answer-This is where most letting agents will just fill you with sales talk. I like to sum it up with the most important fact that effects all landlords-money in your back pocket!
- 99% of our rent was collected within 1 month in 2012
- We had a total of £2,400 arrears across a sample portfolio of 160 properties under management in 2012. That’s £1.25 a property per month!!!
- All of your previous maintenance and guarantees for your property get logged onto our lettings package so we know what has previously happened which allows us to make informed decisions in the future.
- We have a 24 hours, 7 days a week reactive maintenance phone line for your tenants.
- Due to the size of the company we can offer economies of scale for our maintenance – cheaper prices.
Question 5- Question about price?
Answer- We offer half price management to any new landlord’s as a way of showing what we can do. For the first 6 months the management fee is half price at 5% plus VAT. We also do not charge a handing over fee to take your property on – we will do all the running around for you.