Why do some landlords work with lettings agencies while others prefer to go it alone? A survey carried out this month by insurance provider Hamilton Fraser may help us to understand. It found that 48.3% of more than 2,200 landlords polled are self-managing and plan to continue this way, while 27.3% are fully managed and 15.2% sometimes work with agents - so maybe they use an agent to find and check-in a tenant, then take over the management from that point.
The survey also finds that the most common reason landlords gave for working with an agent is the time saving they can enjoy by leaving management to a trusted professional.
This also gives us an insight into why so many landlords polled opted to self-manage; the 2018 English Private Landlord Survey found that 45% of landlords in England own just one rental property. Since smaller portfolios are less of a time commitment than bigger ones, the advantages of using an agent can seem less, especially if there haven't been any issues with the tenants to date.
More than a quarter of landlords said that their main reason for working with an agent was their COVID-19 measures – suggesting that some of the fast-moving and confusing changes to rental legislation during the pandemic has shown the value of having a property professional acting on your behalf. By helping landlords through the pandemic with skill and transparency, agents can demonstrate to landlords that going it alone can be a false economy.
Often the biggest costs to landlords can be caused by void periods, or problems with a tenant either due to arrears, damages, or a breakdown of communication leading to escalating maintenance issues. A good agent can help to prevent these problems with thorough vetting procedures, regular inspections, and legal and rent guarantee covers.
If property management is leaving you stressed, uncertain or time-poor, and you want to find out more about the services a letting agent can provide to relieve that burden for you, give me a call on 01268 955001 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org