Letting agency fees…how much!

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  • Letting agency fees…how much!
  • CaptJon
    Member

    Staggeringly letting agents aren’t regulated and will continue to financially rape people until they are.

    climbingkev
    Member

    I pay £250 for advertising, credit check and initial contract….. just to be watertight and have some recourse if required. Did inventory myself, manage myself, open a DPS account myself etc. If the house is in good nick and you get a good tenant management is minimal i.e. a yearly gas check and a signed covering letter to say the original (agency produced) contract remains extant or add amendments.

    HTH

    EDIT: WHS sell contracts I think for about £25, so if you want to do the leg work yourself it can probably be done for sub £100. I just like the feeling of having someone to blame (although how fruitful this would be I’m not sure) should it all go tits up!

    EDIT AGAIN: EPC was included, no idea they were that expensive. Especially as the last one involved a spotty kid asking if we ever got cold!

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    you should be able to get an EPC for about £100. You only need to do it once.

    Letting fees are usually a % of the annual rent, anywhere between 7.5% and 10% depending on where you are.

    You can do your own inventory – it’s just a schedule of fittings and chattels. Also produce a condition report full of photos including descriptions of condition of decoration/carpets/fittings etc. Get both the inventory and condition report signed by the tenant.

    If you have any gas appliances they need to have a certificate of safety compliance from a Gas Safe engineer for both and this needs doing annually.

    One other thing to look out is automatic fees for roll-over or renewals by tenants. i.e. if they sign for a year, and you;ve paid a 9% fee, you may be charged another, say, 7% fee if the tenant renews for another year. I always strike that out as tenant retention is more down to my efforts as a good landlord than an agent who put them in there twelve months ago and hasnt been in touch with them since.

    toys19
    Member

    join the Residential landlords Assoc and you can get credit checking, cheap epc;s, insurance, legal helpline and all the knowledge and help you need to run the show yourself, all for about £90 a year.

    After 5 minutes of reading their guidance you will know more than any letting agent charlatan scum.

    I have been a landlord since 1999. I’ve only ever lost about 3 months rent, in total, since I started. I can safely say that a lot of this sucess is due to the RLA.

    It would break my heart to think that a clever chap such as yourself would waste a single penny with the thieving scum that call themselves letting agents. All the knowledge and help is there, use it.

    Guaranteed income scheme for us. All we’ve had to do is PAT certificates for the toaster/kettle/etc. and prove the gas fire won’t kill anyone and they do the rest, including sorting out any issues that tenants may have. Guaranteed income covers the mortgage plus a bit more and we get it whether there are folk in there or not.

    andyl
    Member

    Had a letting agency round to value my flat, chose an up market one and got a surprising (in a good way) valuation but also got an estimate of the fees from them. After the fee to advertise and find a tenant, draw up the contract, register the deposit, perform an EPC and get a professional inventory the fee estimate comes in as £1700!

    Arranging my own EPC and inventory will cut about £500 off that but tbh I can’t help but feel that these professional inventories are sold on scare tactics.

    I can see the value in getting them to do the nasty bits and if they get more than X letting agent down the road and better tenants then it makes sense but seeing it all added up made my jaw drop.

    andyl
    Member

    tbh I am coming to the conclusion i should tell them do one.

    I’d rather give someone lower rent and be happier renting for £100 a month less than pay all that.

    Gas and leccy covered as I have one company I trust to do all my electrics and gas for reasonable amounts.

    Inventory wise I know the flat like the back of my hand and have just refurbished it and I have OCD over seeing defects (I don’t mind some, I just see everything eg I don’t have the heart to tell my neighbour all the defects I have seen in a quick walk around of his freshly painted classic car shell). Cheers for the link toys, and the compliment 😉 😳

    The one other agent I have got a pack for (who my neighbours all recommend) want 1/2 of the first months rent which works out as almost £800 cheaper than the first place before you factor in the EPC etc.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    captjon wrote:

    Staggeringly letting agents aren’t regulated and will continue to financially rape people until they are.

    Make sure at least they are registered under the Estate Agent/Letting Agent Ombudsman scheme. This gives you some come back.

    I can’t help but feel that these professional inventories are sold on scare tactics.

    They are but it’s important. An inventory should include a detailed list of all the items in the property, recording the condition etc. of everything, especially if it’s furnished. This should be backed up with photo’s to avoid any disputes and needs to be done on move in and out. The tenant needs to agree to it.
    As for some scare tactics… we had tenants steal pots, replace a sofa bed, have dogs and cats in a house which was no pets, break a window, break a floorboard and a few other things. The agent took such a piss poor inventory that we could not pin anything on the final tenant as the inventories basically listed the house as present, with rooms.

    The good news is you can do it all yourself, you can get contracts online (or someone here will send you one), do the inventory and using some of the online agents (fixed fee) find tenants. You can also field the calls and send out your tradesmen to fix things or do it yourself. We have had move in fees as low as £300 for finding & checking we handled the rest.

    If you have the time then it can be done, if you are more than an hour away it gets much harder.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    Also you set the price not the agent, it’s also not fixed so can be negotiated on. If you want take the cheaper agent and the higher rental price and see how you go. Do your own research as to prices in the area (sometimes quality doesn’t have much of an impact – 2 bed flats are £x-y, 2 bed houses are £y-z for the whole area)

    As above ask for examples of inventories and previous work and check them out with the ombudsman for any complaints or judgements against. Finding a good letting/estate agent is hard work, not many exist and most don’t GAS about you or your property.

    The business model relies on:
    Finders Fee (long term tenants are bad)
    Repairs (done by their contractors) careful neat tenants are bad
    Management fee (% of income) for passing on any problems to you

    TheBrick
    Member

    I’d rather give someone lower rent and be happier renting for £100 a month less than pay all that

    This is what I do, I let a house a little on the cheap side, this means I get lots of applicants and can be picky. My current tenant is a dream, its no guarantee but its better to have a choice of people than to take the one desperate tenant who’ll pay the higher rent who then thinks you’re getting loads of money so its fair game e.t.c.

    b r
    Member

    Also imagine how much any tenant will be paying too – and then both of you again on each change?

    Premier Icon thepurist
    Subscriber

    I used an online agent last time – now called Rentify – a flat fee of about 40 quid got the property onto Rightmove, Zoopla etc., I looked after the viewings and did the negotiation. They did tenant referencing for a small fee and tenancy template gratis, I did inventory and DPS and manage the place myself. Would never use an agent again.

    Premier Icon bails
    Subscriber

    After the fee to … draw up the contract, register the deposit, perform an EPC and get a professional inventory

    As someone who’s renting, I’d be surprised if the letting agents didn’t also charge the tenant for exactly the same things!

    dooosuk
    Member

    I only paid £50 for my EPC. Arrange one yourself, only takes 10-15mins for the person to come and carry it out.

    Gary_M
    Member

    Arranging my own EPC and inventory will cut about £500

    Thats a lot, I had an EPC done on a property late last year and it was £49. Hop around.

    I think the quote for an inventory was £100 but I didn’t bother with that in the end.

    The agent I used for tenant finding service only was going to charge 50% of first months rent but I negotiated them down to £300.

    lasty
    Member

    £100 initial contract for inventory and advertising – they take 10% of each months rent…
    Seems to be going well 😆

    Premier Icon cb
    Subscriber

    Agents will be history soon with all the online services coming through. Truly revolting people.

    IA
    Member

    The worst thing is, as a tenant I get stung for fees too, which I’m sure the agents are charging the landlord fees for the same thing!

    To be fair to the current lot, the fees aren’t massive, and they do sort any issues, but still!

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