Letting: Avoid the voids
Last week I focussed on the need for landlords to ensure property was being marketed properly as the latest figures show rental void periods are rising.
At KIS Lettings we work hard to do everything we can to ensure properties are let quickly with little or no lost rental income for our landlords.
Below we share some of our top tips for landlords marketing a property.
Current photos – use images that show the property as it is now. If it’s summer don’t use an old photo of a snowy property. Take photos in all seasons so you have options when the property needs to be let.
- Lead photo- show the USP. Landlords and agents often use an external view but kitchens, bathrooms and living space sell better.
- Headline- relate to the main picture and create a ‘lifestlye’. Eg. ‘Large open-plan family living space’.
- Description– needs to be accurate and well written. Use a landlord copywriting service if necessary and ensure accuracy to attract a tenant that is more likely to stay.
- Boards– do ensure you have your letting agent’s advertising boards up.
- Maximum exposure– get on Rightmove, Zoopla and Findaproperty and also utilise the low cost window space in local post offices and newsagents.
- Repairs– make sure any repairs are done before the property is advertise and make it a priority to complete any external work that might put viewers off.
- Viewings– have in your contract that you have the right to do viewings in the last 28 days of the tenancy and ensure your tenant understands this. This will help prevent void periods.
Ask any prospective new letting agent…
- Are they purely lettings or do they do sales too? If so which do they specialise in and spend more of their resources on. There will always be a lead business and those specialising in lettings will understand how and why tenant searches need to happen quickly.
- How do they manage their lettings – how many staff do they have and how many properties do they look after? Make sure they will have the resources you need to arrange and attend viewings at the convenience of prospective tenants.
- What qualifications do the staff have and is the company a member of a professional association? Some lettings staff are just office admins but at KIS staff either have or are working towards industry qualifications. They need to know their business.
- Do they have a local knowledge of the area? A good agent will be able to provide some insight into average rents and factors which help to ‘sell’ your property.
- Will you be given full details of marketing activity including the ‘click-through’ rate, viewings and feedback. KIS’ landlords value this information as it helps them to improve the listing or adjust the price of the property if necessary.
- Do they send your property details to potential tenants? If they do, is the database updated regularly because most find their property within 4 to 6 weeks – those looking now are who you want to reach, not hundreds of useless outdated contacts.
MD, KIS Lettings