Did you know that lots of people pay more for their phone bills, car insurance or Wi-Fi simply because the thought of changing providers is too stressful? This is like a lot of landlords – they stick with the same letting agent they’ve used for years just because it’s easier to stay put.
We hate change. Why rock the boat? Sure, the boat may be leaking and have a dodgy fish smell, but is it really that bad?
Well, dodgy boat clichés aside, we’re here to tell you that yes, it really is that bad. You could be making more rental income, have a better working relationship and not have to put up with ignored emails or calls if you simply switch letting agents (preferably to us here at Martin & Co, we’re very good).
When you work with a letting agent, you might be used to bad habits, such as poor communication, compliance errors, late rental payments or poor-quality inspections, but should you put up with it?
The simple answer is: no. No matter how competitive their fee, a lazy letting agent can be very bad for your rental business. If you’re struggling to get your agent to return your calls or to find out why your tenant is unhappy, it’s time to start looking for a new agent.
It’s not that complicated
While you could stay put and make do with bad customer service, it’s not that hard to switch letting agents.
Steps to take
If you’re ready to make the jump, here are some pointers:
- Check your contract. How long is it for? How much notice do you need to give your existing agent? Are there any early exit fees involved? (Remember, this contract is usually separate from any tenancy agreement signed between you and your tenant.)
- Once you’re happy with the leaving legalities, send written notice that you wish to terminate the contract. Always ask for written confirmation that your notice has been received.
- Create a paper/email trail of written communication between you and the letting agency – this will be invaluable if there are any misunderstandings or disputes.
- Ensure you have copies of all paperwork linked to the property, such as gas safety certificates, warranties, tenancy agreements, tenant identification, EPCs and deposit details.
- Let your tenant know you are switching agents.
- Once the notice period is over, collect the property’s keys, the original tenancy agreement, and any other documents. Reset any alarm codes, if necessary.
- Finally, seek written confirmation from your outgoing agent that all fees are paid and that your working relationship with them has ended with no outstanding matters.
If you’re looking for a new letting agent, our team at Martin & Co are happy to help.