Why does no one want to rent my flat? Should I admit defeat and use an agent?

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  • hamilton
    replied
    Originally posted by jdmf View Post
    I don't know this area of London well but the rent seems quite cheap for a 3 bed flat in zone 2.
    By way of comparison, here are the other 3-bed properties currently available for up to £2000/month in the E1 postcode:

    http://tinyurl.com/p7y3b2f

    Leave a comment:


  • jdmf
    replied
    I don't know this area of London well but the rent seems quite cheap for a 3 bed flat in zone 2.

    I think the ad is only going to appeal to the bottom end of the market. You aren't using an agent (I think a lot of tenants in London find using an agent reassuring), you are suggesting using the lounge as a fourth bedroom, you are taking a deposit but not doing an inventory/check in and the furniture looks cheap end of the market. The ad and flat are not geared up to attract young professional sharers.

    I think you need to do a bit of market research and the easiest way to do that is to get a few agents round and ask them lots of questions and try and work out which of them are telling the truth and which are saying what they think you want to hear so they can get your business. You then need to work out your target market and cater to it. Being an ex-council flat will restrict your market.

    There is a lot of competition in the rental market at the moment in London and my experience this year is that rents are very price sensitive. I only use an agent to find tenants but I think it is worth doing. If you can find a good agent that knows the market in that area, they should know what you need to do to the flat to attract tenants and how much rent you are likely to get. Although finding a good agent is a lot easier said than done.

    Leave a comment:


  • hamilton
    replied
    Originally posted by kmmr View Post
    The area is popular, but people expect good quality accommodation, and based on your pictures you seem to be aiming at the very lower end of the student market - a market which simply doesn't exist. It's too expensive for students, but not good enough quality for the young professionals that you are aiming at.
    You've hit the nail on the head! The furniture looks awful - those cheap divan beds! And while Whitechapel is close to the city and Brick Lane, it's pretty rough, too. So if you live there, you really want your flat to feel like an oasis of civility, not like a bottom-of-the-market dive for which you're being charged a premium price.

    If you're a poor student, you can find a 3-bed with lounge for £1000-£1200 a month in Leytonstone. It's a little further out, but the flats themselves aren't any worse than the OP is offering:

    http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-...-33277171.html
    http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-...-41310605.html
    http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-...-37694153.html

    Perhaps the answer is to remove all the furniture, get the flat tastefully decorated, and look for tenants who are professionals looking for a long-term home, and who can supply their own furniture? And don't mention that the lounge can become a fourth bedroom, because you probably don't want those sort of tenants!

    Leave a comment:


  • Berlingogirl
    replied
    I agree with Brb. It would kill me to pay that much. You can get a 2 bed flat for that price for a WHOLE MONTH where I live.

    Can you post your new piccies please? I'm sure everyone would like to see the before and after.

    Leave a comment:


  • kmmr
    replied
    I know this area well, I have a small flat very close to your place, and I think it is all down to presentation.

    The area is popular, but people expect good quality accommodation, and based on your pictures you seem to be aiming at the very lower end of the student market - a market which simply doesn't exist. It's too expensive for students, but not good enough quality for the young professionals that you are aiming at.

    I wouldn't say it was the price. Normally if you are getting viewings the price is ok, but there is something that puts people off when they see the place.

    The flat advertised by foxtons is the quality you need to aim for. Better pictures, good quality fittings, simple professional approach to give tenants confidence that this is a good quality low stress home.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brb
    replied
    Originally posted by Property Bee
    18 May 2013

    Brief Description changed: Property number 20849. Three-bedroom flat available from 30th May 1st June in Whitechapel. Separate living room which can be used as a large fourth bedroom. Will be redecorated throughout prior to tenancy. Quiet residential location near amenities and transport routes. location...
    Price changed: from '£435 pw' to '£415 pw'

    11 May 2013

    Price changed: from '£465 pw' to '£460 pw'
    Price changed: from '£460 pw' to '£435 pw'

    05 May 2013

    Brief Description changed: Property number 20849. Four bedroom (no living room) flat to let Three-bedroom flat available from 30th May in Whitechapel -- brilliant Whitechapel. Separate living room which can be let used as a three-bedroom flat with a living room. large fourth bedroom. Quiet residential location near amenities and transport routes. Could also
    Price changed: from '£2,060 pcm' to '£465 pw'
    Subtitle changed: 4 3 bedroom maisonette

    04 May 2013

    Initial entry found.
    Am so glad I'm a country gal. I honestly think I would cry if I was paying that. 2 bed semi £500pcm Northamptonshire 50 min train journey to London (not that I go there).

    Is it prudent to have washing machine so close to oven ? Looks odd.

    Leave a comment:


  • mind the gap
    replied
    Finally - a flat rated E for energy efficiency is not wonderful. Most flats are much better than that. E is worse than most old detached houses with no cavity wall!

    What sort of heating has it got and how much does that heating cost to run each year?

    Leave a comment:


  • Interlaken
    replied
    Try taking a photo with toilet seat closed! Yuk! And the mis-matching cistern is a no-no.

    Council block of flats = problem, cacker tenants - yes I am making a judgement just like other readers.

    Price too high. Not exactly going to attract the young professional whom it is priced at.

    The rest has been said...........

    Leave a comment:


  • westminster
    replied
    but it's just something put them off once they'd done the viewing.
    Part of it has to be the cheap/mismatched furnishings and bleak, unloved air.

    One bathroom for 3 or 4 working people sharing isn't ideal - and is there a shower? Is there enough storage for toiletries?

    Also, if friends of this group of 20-something friends come round, where would they all eat? The table only sits four people.

    Have you considered where everyone will put their PC or laptop?

    Are there wardrobes in the bedrooms?

    And look what these three friends sharing can get for an extra tenner a week each.
    http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-...-38564131.html

    Leave a comment:


  • JohnsonJohnson
    replied
    Hello,

    Thanks again for all the suggestions - very helpful again.

    It's interesting that only one person has mentioned the price. I have considered just dropping the price, as if I did that sufficiently far it would be a sure-fire way of getting tenants (although not necessarily the best quality tenants) -- but it seems my place is already on at a lower price than very similar nearby flats. Also, I am actually getting some reasonable prospective tenants through the door who have already seen the price alongside the floorplan, location, and an exterior photo of the block - so clearly they didn't think the price was excessively high on first impressions, but it's just something put them off once they'd done the viewing. I'd be interested in further thoughts about the price issue though.

    I've answered some specific queries below but would still be interested in any further thoughts.

    Originally posted by the-smiths View Post
    First Listed on Rightmove: 18 May 2013 ( 10 hours ago )

    so its saying listed on rightmove a few minutes before OP post???????
    I think the date Rightmove is showing is the last time I made a (minor) edit; the ad has been there for about 17 days now.

    Originally posted by JonFlower View Post
    ... also the deposit seems a bit steep?
    Just over a month's rent is fairly standard I think? (most letting agents around where I am ask for six weeks)

    Originally posted by QuestForFreedom View Post
    Is the location desirable? Looks like an ex council block to me.
    It is indeed an ex-council block, but it's also only 15-20 minutes' walk from the edge of the City of London and five minutes' walk from a station which is on three tube lines -- so the issues you'd get trying to let an ex-council flat in many parts of the country should be significantly lessened. Also it is obviously ex-council from the exterior photo on the Gumtree/Spareroom ads (which have been eliciting viewers) so clearly that's not putting those people off initially at least.

    Originally posted by mariner View Post
    OP have you identified your target market and conducted any market research to identify potential tenants?
    Thanks for taking the time to give some thoughts. I do know the market pretty well as I live in the area and my own personal circumstances are actually fairly similar to those of my target tenants -- my expected tenants would be a group of 20-something friends who work in central London. It's generally accepted that there is a very high demand from this type of tenant in the area. This type of tenant will look for fully-furnished accommodation, which is what I'm offering.

    The people who have done viewings have matched my expected target groups, so I think on this score at least I am reasonably on track. I'd be interested in any further thoughts on this though.

    Leave a comment:


  • mariner
    replied
    OP have you identified your target market and conducted any market research to identify potential tenants? eg scouring local Wanted and To let ads? Invite local LAs to view and pitch for your custom. Most will do so foc and may suggest improvements. This gives you a chance to question them about their pool of Ts and the ones they would suggest for your property.

    You state property is furnished, does that mean all furniture (beds, settee's etc) are LL property? This could limit your target Ts to those who have nothing or only want a London pied-de-terre for work. Laminate flooring is OK but maybe not best choice for a falt in a block (noise complaints from flat below?)
    Consider marketing as part/unfurnished with carpets & some optional white goods.
    Your property description should be pithy & concise. focus on benefits for London location eg of-street parking if avail. BB avail is not feature, a working tel connrction may be.
    The phrases my LAs currently use are rent & presentation .

    Leave a comment:


  • Claymore
    replied
    The add says 'furnished' but there are no curtains or blinds in any of the pictures and it just does not look homely or inviting.

    Leave a comment:


  • QuestForFreedom
    replied
    Is the location desirable? Looks like an ex council block to me.

    Leave a comment:


  • westminster
    replied
    It looks drab and depressing and you need better photos to counteract the ugly local-authority block the flat's in. Also, picture 2 shows clothes on a rail, suggesting that there isn't any storage.

    Painting it isn't going to solve its problems, however. You need to do more work on it to make it more homely - somewhere that someone would actually want to live in.

    Leave a comment:


  • the-smiths
    replied
    First Listed on Rightmove: 18 May 2013 ( 10 hours ago )

    so its saying listed on rightmove a few minutes before OP post???????

    Leave a comment:

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