Are there too many Letting Agents?

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    Are there too many Letting Agents?

    There seems to be dozens of them in each town, but judging by the stories here and elsewhere, the standard of them is truly diabolical. (With a few notable exceptions such as those who post here)

    If there are so many to choose from, how do they get away with such truly awful service at such high fees? Why do LL's put up with them?

    As an ancillary question, how to LLs try to select a good agent? Judging by number and size of non-regulated Agents, membership of ARLA et al doesn't seem to matter a damn.

    I'm confused. What motivation is there to offer excellent service unless the individual is concerned with just doing what's right? What would a conscientious agent have to do to attract your business?

    Cheers
    Now signature free.

    #2
    It appears that most people get decent agents simply from word of mouth!
    Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

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      #3
      The problem is that they are not required to be regulated - anybody can set up as a letting agent and more than a few decide that it is a way to make money. However, the only people who seem to get ripped of is landlords! Now if tenants were ripped off by letting agents, then there would be a ton of regulations to prevent that happening. Look at the situation with deposits: Most landlords are reasonable about their refunds at the end of a tenancy, but a few consider that it is their money thus we have the current situation. I certainly intend to make some form of administration charge when signing up new tenants to cover my tenant deposit scheme costs - why should I have to pay out of my own pocket?

      P.P.
      Any information given in this post is based on my personal experience as a landlord, what I have learned from this and other boards and elsewhere. It is not to be relied on. Definitive advice is only available from a Solicitor or other appropriately qualified person.

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        #4
        Originally posted by lorenzo View Post
        If there are so many to choose from, how do they get away with such truly awful service at such high fees? Why do LL's put up with them?
        Because most of the landlords who use letting agencies are only interested in getting a property let out - and don't really care who does it as long as it is done fast. Many landlords put their property with more than one letting agent and simply go with whoever finds a tenant first.
        Originally posted by lorenzo View Post
        As an ancillary question, how to LLs try to select a good agent? Judging by number and size of non-regulated Agents, membership of ARLA et al doesn't seem to matter a damn.
        See my above reply. And yes, being a member of ARLA doesn't matter a damn - they are a toothless guard dog that barks alot but doesn't actually do anything.
        Originally posted by lorenzo View Post
        I'm confused. What motivation is there to offer excellent service unless the individual is concerned with just doing what's right? What would a conscientious agent have to do to attract your business?
        See my reply above! Unfortunately, the agent who can find a tenant the quickest isn't necessarily the best agent in town - ethically speaking. I've been with a few different agents and all but my current one have been appalling. In fact I have found, to my detriment in the past, that I know more about landlord law and am more up to date with legislation than most letting agents I've come across. With all this in mind, you can understand why many landlords steer shy of letting agents, big or small, and regardless of their claims in the sales literature.

        Regards,
        Paul.

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          #5
          i think if you have worked for a bad agent before, it motivates you to start up on your own and provide a better service. thats my future plan anyway.
          some management forget about landlord no1 who helped them start off there business, but wine and dine landlord no400 as they can afford to now (only thanks to landlord 1) however if i turned to my boss for advice, he would choose the cowards way out (do it the cheap way, not return clients phone calls etc) which did reflect badly on me as i was trying to help clients but had no back up from management.
          As previous comments do say, word of mouth is the best way.
          We are not all bad :O)

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            #6
            Originally posted by PdV View Post

            See my reply above! Unfortunately, the agent who can find a tenant the quickest isn't necessarily the best agent in town - ethically speaking. I've been with a few different agents and all but my current one have been appalling. In fact I have found, to my detriment in the past, that I know more about landlord law and am more up to date with legislation than most letting agents I've come across. With all this in mind, you can understand why many landlords steer shy of letting agents, big or small, and regardless of their claims in the sales literature.

            Regards,
            Paul.
            Paul,

            If that is the case, it is in fact LLs who help to perpetuate poor service? Could it be that they could potentially cost you far more than the addition few days of void?

            ... and, if you found a very good agent, would you stick with them exclusively?
            Now signature free.

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