How do you arrange viewings?

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    #16
    I advertise on UPAD - same as openrent really.

    When my enquiries come in, they are via email. I send them a reply email which says:

    If answering the following questions truthfully, and you are certain you won't fail a credit check, you are still interested in viewing my property, then please contact me on mobile number etc to arrange a viewing.

    This will get rid of a lot of time-wasters.


    List of questions may include?

    How long at previous address, can you provide contact details for your landlord and the previous landlord?
    Have you incurred any bank charges in the last 6 months for non-paid items?
    Do you have or have you ever had a CCJ?
    How long have you been in your current job?
    How many people will be living at the property?
    Have you ever been evicted and if so why?

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      #17
      Originally posted by boletus View Post

      That can certainly be improved on, I'd get maybe 1 no show out of that lot.

      1. You're advertising in the wrong places.
      2. As said, your pre-vetting isn't working/good enough.
      3. Underpricing is attracting the wrong types.
      4. Get them to confirm the viewing 1 hr before.
      5. Agree with getting it on Rightmove, I'd choose another online agent though.
      I realise I was advertising in the wrong places, but tried advertising nearer to home first.
      Under pricing (slightly) was designed to attract the employed
      I should have confirmed the viewing, but if you're really interested you'd have remembered the time
      Which online agent would you recommend?

      Comment


        #18
        Thank you everyone for your interesting replies. My observation is that your suggestions might reflect the area in which you live/let.

        I have to say, sadly, that if I sent out a questionnaire most of my prospective tenants couldn't fill it in. I know that might sound snobby. It isn't meant to be, but it's a sad fact. Please accept that.

        I think I'll have to stick to group bookings for the most part, with the 1/2 hour reminder before hand. Anybody that can string a sentence together even with poor spelling gets the tenancy

        Comment


          #19
          Originally posted by Berlingogirl View Post
          Which online agent would you recommend?
          Upad or Visum.
          The agent you mention have certainly carved out their place but they are not for me personally. When I tried them, I felt they dictated too much how I run my business. They also make a point of tenants dealing directly with landlords, becoming (IMO) the go-to place for tenants who wouldn't be entertained by a high street agent. I don't have a problem finding tenants, only with sorting out the bad ones. Horses for courses.

          if I sent out a questionnaire most of my prospective tenants couldn't fill it in.
          Might be worth at least asking "Please can you tell me a little about yourself?"

          And please do take sensible precautions if doing the viewings yourself;
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disapp..._Suzy_Lamplugh

          Comment


            #20
            You're right, different areas of the country may require different approaches. Different target tenants may also require different approaches.

            In the South East, where demand is perhaps higher and you're looking for professionals as tenants, then the chances of them filling out a form prior to viewings is slim at best. They could be ideal tenants but too much admin would put them off.

            I typically set up 2 or 3 sessions (weekend and evening) where I book 15 minute slots for anyone who wants to view. Anyone who responds to the ad, I call them, check they've got time to talk, then quiz them for a couple of minutes on what their general circumstances are, why they're looking to move, family situation, pets/smoking etc. It's also a chance to build a little rapport. If they sound potentially OK, then book them into a slot. If they don't, then tell them it's probably not worth wasting their time as you have had significant demand etc. Then send the chosen ones a confirmation email. If only a few viewers, then call the day before or on the morning to confirm they can still make it. If lots (we had 30 last time!) then email a re-confirmation. Then call everyone the day after to get their thoughts and any offer they want to make.

            If, having met them, they are suitable, and they want to make an offer, then at that stage get them to fill out all the admin you want. They won't mind as they'll be wedded to wanting the property and won't want to lose out (because they will know you had multiple viewings and there is competition).

            Basically, your competition is Letting Agents - who are professional salespeople. As a landlord, you are also a salesperson, selling the use of your property for the next 6 months+. So think about how a letting agent operates, take the best bits and replicate/improve and make sure you don't do the worst bits (in fact, make a point of telling your viewers what those bad points of a letting agent are and hammer home the benefits of dealing with the landlord direct!).

            Have always used Upad, thinking about trying Openrent next time as they're cheaper.

            Comment


              #21
              Organize an 'open house' 2 hr viewing on a single date, (prob Sat PM).
              Introduce yourself to each attendee and provide your questionnaire to be completed/returned before they leave.
              If so, you will notify your preferred choices within 5 working days.

              Comment


                #22
                Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                I made a conscious decision to treat tenants as customers.
                Which works for me.
                It's a mindset thing, not based on the country or its circumstances.

                And I'm not sure about the landed gentry view.
                I have arrived at the conclusion that landlords, in the main, don't know what they're doing and act rashly, panic and bully because they're scared of the business they're in.
                And many of those who do know what they're doing are basically crooks.
                Agents are mostly staffed by people in their first adult job chasing commission which doesn't help.
                agree with this 100%
                treat with respect as a valued customer and hopefully get same respect and appreciation back

                I've had a ridiculous amount of enquiries via open rent but when I send them my questions they either can't or won't answer and the ones that do and actually get to view and want it end up being non proceededable for whatever "hidden agenda" they had all along .. I can even hear them smoking as they say no I don't smoke and then they say oh yeah I've a really old staffy ( that doesn't really count as a dog anymore as its so old and small)

                I am hearing non stop from tenants that wouldn't pass full credit checks and referencing with an estate or letting agency... They seemingly like to think open rent equates to an easy route landlord that won't bother checking them out - totally the wrong idea ....someone has clearly started a rumour that open rent is the way forward for un creditworthy and bad tenants ..it's not, it's just an advertising means !!!

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                  #23
                  Look at Open Rent it gets you on right move and zoopla for £30 and referencing is very good value too.

                  We created a list on a spreadsheet of everyone that said they were interested and what information we had been able to obtain through a phone conversation. We then did 20 minute slots, over a weekend afternoons, the current tenant went out and allowed us to take over, because I was being VERY flexible on moving out date and on changes she'd made - I'd agree to ignore a few things so she'd get her deposit back.
                  We made sure we had email addresses, and phone number, and texted the agreed time and then sent a text reminder about an hour before. We also made sure they knew that the existing tenant was being put out by allowing the early viewings. We had 2 cancellations on the day, but one of those was the partner of another viewer who'd both made appointments, and hadn't realised they were talking about the same house. They are living there now.

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                    #24
                    I hopeI am not a LL with 19C approach.x
                    Current LAs have a similar attrition rate with viewings. (Window shopping?)
                    Councils tend to score applicants, limit viewing invites to 3 highest scores in score (most deserving order) on the day
                    These days, GDPR etc may limit collection of personal Contact info.
                    When I was a Dinner Event Organizer I grew tired of notifying the Venue of a 25% reduction in attendees.
                    I then required a nominal non-refundable booking fee to partly defray cost of' no shows'.
                    I don't think there is one solution to fit all.

                    Comment


                      #25
                      I'm having an awful lot of problematic enquiries via Openrent this time around

                      It would seem like "word has got around" if you are struggling to get a LL to accept you - try Open-rent. THIS IS NOT TRUE ! Openrent is not just for the backstreet landlords seeking desperate tenants that want to do it all on same day, word only,,cash in hand. It's also for decent LL's with high standards that prefer to manage their own.

                      "Tenants" are simply not being honest and ultimately can't provide the info they first said they could...

                      A genuine decent applicant never has a problem with answering some basic info questions before arranging a viewing but there's seemingly a new idea going round that they can just view and move in with no questions.

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Originally posted by Rewolf View Post
                        A genuine decent applicant never has a problem with answering some basic info questions before arranging a viewing
                        I don't think that's necessarily true.
                        I would not expect to be asked for anything other than contact details just to arrange a viewing, and no agent has ever asked any other questions.
                        I would walk away from a private landlord who starts off by being unnecessarily intrusive, as it's only likely to get worse, there are plenty of other options.


                        Comment


                          #27
                          Originally posted by Ted.E.Bear View Post
                          I would walk away from a private landlord who starts off by being unnecessarily intrusive, as it's only likely to get worse, there are plenty of other options.

                          good point but also not true

                          if you have an hour round trip to conduct viewings you want to ascertain a few things first to eliminate wasting anyones time, which including theirs

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                            #28
                            Originally posted by Rewolf View Post
                            I'm having an awful lot of problematic enquiries via Openrent this time around
                            That has been my experience also.

                            A genuine decent applicant never has a problem with answering some basic info questions before arranging a viewing .
                            That is my policy too. No point wasting both our time when there is no chance of me taking them on.

                            there's seemingly a new idea going round that they can just view and move in with no questions
                            Yep, finding that too. Getting quite a few emails from irate mothers demanding to know why I won't let my immaculate £150K flat to her little Jonny who can't string a coherent sentence together.

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Originally posted by boletus View Post

                              Getting quite a few emails from irate mothers demanding to know why I won't let my immaculate £150K flat to her little Jonny who can't string a coherent sentence together.
                              With much patience, Johny maybe OK so long as he can prove he's worthy .. and if mummy can go clean up after him when needs be 😂🚼👰
                              I was verbally abused on the phone by one nutter.. believe it or not I could feel it coming and was. glad when it did so least I don't have to make up excuses for rejecting their enquiry..., they wanted to "try it see if they liked it before committing" said that's what they'd just done with another and scarily went into a full blown rant about the current place they were living in but going to leave without notice . I said I'm sorry but I can't offer a "taster/ trial" - I do things properly, to be met with a barrage of abuse part of which entailed I don't give a ###K about you or your ####OMG house ... oh that's so good to know 👌

                              Comment


                                #30
                                I don’t have this problem, can’t afford to.

                                No-shows make up less than 5% of all our viewings, and even then there’s usually an apology, a reason for not turning up and a hope to rebook.

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