Empty property and covid 19

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    Empty property and covid 19

    Hi Guys

    My rental property is currently empty after having just undergone refurbishment, prior to covid 19. I signed up for a fully managed service (I live away from the property) with a local letting agent and they efficiently found a tenant, but where then subsequently furloughed. This was 3 weeks ago. Nothing has obviously happened since. No ast has been signed to date, nor tenant checks completed as yet as far as I am aware. I have been in touch with them today and this looks set to continue with their offices remaining closed for the foreseeable future.

    The property needs a gas cert but other than that is fully movable into.

    I just wondered if anyone was in a similar situation, and whether they are just sitting tight for now?

    i have seen so much conflicting advice regarding check ins etc that i am not sure what is allowed and what is not. I just have the feeling I should be doing something but am not. I feel my hands are now tied to this agent (albeit they have been great so far, I feel bad for them) when I know other agents continue to work even if it is from home.

    Any advice would be much appreciated!

    #2
    I am in the same situation, finished minor refurb a couple of months ago and then all this social distancing and lockdown stuff came in.
    I am going to leave it empty for a few months to see how things evolve. My own job is not 100% safe right now so the last thing I need is a tenant that is about to lose their job and default on payments.
    If you don’t already have an up to date EICR then think about arranging for that to be done so you are at least doing something productive whilst the property is empty (that is of course if you can find an electrician willing to do it at this time)

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      #3
      My agent is doing video walk throughs of properties - fine to do if it is empty - and then doing extra pre-contract checks on applicants. By identifying a tenant who can proceed and who is likely to do so it is possible to show one tenant, one property, once and then let the property.

      There are ways to get your property let in this market and there are people who need to move but you need your agent to be a bit more creative.

      Good luck

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        #4
        jpucng62,

        Ditto.
        For the first time in my life I had a tenant move in last Friday who I have never met.
        Viewed on video and vetted online. She seems happy there so far...

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          #5
          Thanks all for your helpful replies! Video walk through sounds a great idea, thanks for the suggestion!

          I have my fingers crossed for your job Btl investor. I certainly will carry on trying to get things actioned as you suggest.

          My issue though is that
          1) I am still waiting for the agent to get back to me with an update and some advice. It’s been over 24 hours so far and no response as it’s a helpline given their offices are closed. I am hoping they will be in touch soon. They have all the keys so without them cooperating it may be tricky (although there is always a locksmith I guess). I am happy to arrange gas certs etc. myself, but still need to arrange access.
          2) I was thinking of getting another agent to do a tenant find, but not sure this does not make me in breach of contract with the first agent? I guess these are such uncertain times, who knows, but you would think their closure puts them in breach of contract and not me? Any ideas?

          thanks once again

          Comment


            #6
            I’ve never used agents so don’t understand how the contracts work but if you can’t get hold of them and they haven’t responded to anything from you and no tenancy agreement has been signed then I don’t see how you would be in breach of anything by instructing a different agent to find a tenant.

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