Accreditations and Reputations
When searching for a lettings or estate agent it is always advisable to search for an agent who is a member of a professional body or personally recommended to you by someone who you trust and someone who is or has been a client of the agency recommended.
- ARLA - Association of Residential Letting Agents
- TPOS - The Property Ombudsman
- UKALA - The UK Association of Lettings Agents
- NAEA- National Association of Estate Agents
- RICS- Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Click here to search our shortlist for a recommended safe and regulated agent in London.
Typical Letting Services
Services provided by letting agents vary from agent to agent and is heavily dependent on your requirements.
- Let Only/Letting Only Service - This service typically includes instructing and marketing your property. Finding, vetting and introducing a tenant and finally in most cases completing a signing of contracts (usually provided from the agency).
- Rental Guarantee/Guaranteed Rent - This service is not offered by all agents. The service includes all that of the Let Only service with the addition of collection of rent, management of tenant and legal measures in place as well as the continuation of rental payments should the tenant fail to pay.
- Rental Warranty/Rental Collection - This service includes all that of Let Only and is very similar to rental guarantee with the exception of guaranteeing rental payments. Instead, the agency will offer you an insurance like service that will cover you generally for up to six months full or partial rent and they will also cover your legal costs should a tenant need to be taken to court.
- Full Management - This service offers the full package and includes maintenance management, as well as rental collection, legal cover and the full vetting of tenants. This service is best for first time landlords, busy landlords with a large portfolio and international landlords.
Agents will typically market on large property web portals for as much exposure as possible, in addition they will physically market your property in their windows, and on their publications. It is a good idea to find out just where your agent will be marketing your property as this may play a huge factor in how quickly or how long it takes for your property to be let.
Larger and more successful agents tend to advertise your property in as many places at any one time to fast increase exposure.
Agency fees are generally taken up front on shorter contracts and spread on contracts longer than 12months. The fees hugely vary from area to area, agency to agency and/or services offered. Below are some typical fees for the typical letting services.
- Let Only - Average fees 4% - 10% of the full contract amount (in many cases VAT may be added on top)
- Rental Warranty/Rental Collection/Rental Guarantee- Average fees 7% - 12.5% of the full contract amount (VAT may be an additional cost)
- Full Managment - Average fees 10%- 17% of the full contract amount (VAT may be an additional cost)
When negotiating fees always consider what the full terms of agreement include, it is best to negotiate on the more secure services such as rental collection and full management. Generally agents will negotiate their fees and move within 1-3% which makes a huge difference on cash flow. Also consider getting your agent to offer you a fee spread to help even out your Cash Flow.