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Training Manual 2: Lettings Confidential Must not be copied or distributed without written permission © GR Phelps Ltd 2012 www.grphelpsonline.com www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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Contents Introduction ............................................................................................................................................ 3 MARKETING YOUR LETTING AGENCY ..................................................................................................... 4 Useful documents ................................................................................................................................. 24

GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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Introduction One of the most important services we offer is our Find a Tenant service – with viewings conducted by you or the Landlord. This is either a fixed-fee or a percentage of monthly rental if viewing done by yourself or simple fee for advertising the vacant property if viewings conducted by the owner. You can also offer additional services such as tenant reference and credit checks, inventory services and property and letting management. Credit checks are always needed from the prospective or chosen tenant. These are best performed by us and the tenant charged a fee ranging from £50 to £150. The following ebook included in this manual(“How to find a better tenant faster”) is available to send or give to customers and is included here as an excellent training or reference guide. Please see also the general points regarding a Landlord review at the back of this section. We can also provide high-quality letting management full services. A number of useful forms and guides are available in the article or FAQ sections of www.grphelpsonline.co.uk

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GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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Getting started with your new letting agency The success of any business depends on how well you market it. However, with a letting agency there are two distinct markets; landlords and tenants - and so two distinct marketing approaches are necessary. Whilst the landlords effectively pay your wages and tenants pay you nothing, marketing to prospective tenants is equally important since the more tenants you attract the more landlords you can serve - and the happier they will be. However, this is becoming less important for letting agent as so many tenants are now registered with the larger property websites that this effectively becomes your tenant database as well. Promoting Your Service to Landlords There are many different types of landlords and each has a slightly different motivation for wanting to use a letting agency service. Some of them may be seasoned property investors with many properties to let, while others may just own one property. Some may be expatriates who are working abroad, while others may turn to letting because they are unable to sell their own home. Whatever their situation, you must actively promote your service to them. These methods are all suitable: 1. Press Releases and Editorials Local newspapers, radio, advertising magazines and websites are always interested in the launch of a new business. So send them a press release and tell them about your business. You will get some free publicity. Also, if you decide to advertise with the newspaper you will almost certainly get much more free press release publicity in the future. 2. Recommendations and Referrals Most landlords and people in the property business know other land lords and others who make their living from the properties market. Once you are established in the business you will automatically benefit from this word of mouth' advertising. However, make a conscious effort to use it, simply by mentioning to everyone you come into con tact with in your property business that you also offer a professional letting service. 3. Local Advertising This is can be an effective form of advertising, especially for a new agency. It is also probably the most effective way of reaching the 'non professional' landlord, i.e. those who have just one property they wish to rent out perhaps because they do not wish to sell it, which is the Ideal type of business for the new agency. This is also may be a good way of attracting customers who perhaps had not thought of renting their property through an agency. Once they realise you are available, they may decide to do so. You do not need a series of expensive, full page advertisements to establish your agency. The best policy to adopt is one of 'little and often.' Simple lineage adverts are effective, but make sure you place them every day or week. Here are some examples: LANDLORDS! All types of property required for waiting tenants. Full Management or Basic Letting Service. For FREE details Tel. 01234 567890. Vacant property? We can find you a tenant for just £99 Call / sms or email EMPTY PROPERTY? Specialist Letting Agency requires all types of property. Tenants GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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waiting. For free details telephone: 01234 567890. Specialist Letting Agency requires all types of property for waiting tenants. Telephone 01234 567890 for free details. Always point out that you have tenants waiting. Landlords will always be attracted more quickly if they know that their property can be filled quickly. Maybe offer a money-back guarantee if paying up front. It is also worth stressing that you are a specialist letting agency. I.e. not just an estate agency that does letting on the side.' Again, landlords will be attracted if they feel you specialise in letting and their property won't be treated as a lower priority than property for sale, which is the case with many estate agents. GR Phelps / fixed fee edge: Not all letting agents will be keen to offer a fixed fee tenant finding service, but rather sell a managed service at 10-15 or even 20% of monthly rental. Also, writing a good advert is important and do not assume that all agents are good at this. 4. Your Competition It makes good sense to get to know other people and companies in your area who are running a letting service. Rather than being fierce competitors you can actually help each other to work more productively and profitably. It is often the case that other letting agencies may have a glut of a particular type of properties to let, while you may have a shortage. You may have properties which you find hard to let, while other agencies could fill them in days. By working together you can match supply and demand even more effectively over a wider area. In areas where you co-operate with another letting agency it is usual to share the fee income 50-50 or they keep the Landlord fee and you keep the tenant credit check and reference fee. Tip: Offer to find a multiple landlords property next tenant free, so long as you get the reference fee from tenant. 5. Direct Contact With The Landlord. Build up your own personal contact list of landlords in your area. You can do this by making enquiries with other letting agencies, as well as scouring the property 'small ads.' You may also find some landlords listed in the 'Yellow Pages' under 'Accommodation.' Do some detective work with the aim of matching together known landlords with their properties and then finding a telephone or address contact for them. It is well worth contacting these people direct to establish a relation ship. There is no need for any hard sell. Just introduce yourself. This method is suitable: Make a preliminary phone call "Hello, could I speak to Mr. Brown please. Good morning Mr. Brown. My name is Mike B from Mike Black Associates. We operate a specialist property letting service in the Anytown area. I understand that you let your properties from time to time and I would like to send you some details of the service we offer to landlords in your area. Would that be OK? With this sort of approach the landlord has nothing to lose and so is unlikely to object. Simply confirm the email or postal address to send the literature to.

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Send out some basic information This is where you can gain advantage over many of your competitors. Many agents do not have any formal sales literature, relying instead on a verbal description of their services. However, in this business image is very important. By sending out descriptive and well presented literature you will be one step ahead. Although a brochure is ideal you can prepare simple sales literature by writing a description of your services, adding a list of charges and sending it with a sales letter. Print this up on your business letterheads. A sample sales letter and brochure copy is provided at the end of this lesson. Make a follow up phone call Hello Mr Brown? This Mike Black from Mike Black Associates. I'm just calling to make sure that you received the information on our property letting service that I promised you. You did. That's great can I ask you f you use a letting agent at the moment?' From here you can go on to find all the information about the landlord, i.e. whether they use an agent, whether they would consider using one, how many properties they have, how often they come up for let, and whether they have any properties at the current time. Not every contact will necessarily result in immediate business of course. However, if you have made a professional approach your agency is highly likely to be remembered for the future. 6. Direct Contact With Householders You should also consider making a direct approach to private individuals who have their houses up for sale and Identified by 'For Sale' signs in the garden. This approach works best of all in a sluggish housing market, or at times of the year when it is more difficult to sell property, i.e. during the winter. If these sellers have lined up a new property but cannot sell their own they risk losing the new property. By renting and then selling at their leisure it solves their problem quickly. These people may not have thought about renting or using an agency so your approach could be very welcome.

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Promoting Your Service To Tenants While every good letting agent provides a first class service to landlords, don't forget that it also offers considerable advantages for tenants. Instead of responding to dozens of small ads for property to rent (many of which are taken by the time they reply), tenants can find the right property for them through one single point of contact, and at no cost to them. In short, as a letting agent, you will have an instant, ready-made customer network with no hard selling. Very few businesses can boast those advantages. When promoting your service to tenants remember that all tenants are looking for one thing - a place to live which is just right for them and at the best (low) rent Whether that place is rented direct from a commercial landlord, estate agent, householder or letting agent is largely irrelevant to the tenant. However, you can encourage them to let through you if: a) You make it easy for them to find and view suitable properties b) The whole letting process is made as simple and straight forward as possible. Remember tenants leave bad landlords and letting agents just as much as they leave bad properties. In this regard remember that your tenant is in some ways a client' of your business! As such, you need to promote arid sell your service effectively to them. Here are the best ways to reach prospective tenants: 1. Press Releases and Editorials These can be used to attract tenants as well as landlords. When preparing a press release or editorial for the purpose of attracting tenants, remember that it must stress the benefits to the tenant, rather than to the landlord. 2. Local Advertising Local advertising is very much the lifeblood of the letting agency business, so far as finding tenants is concerned. Every local paper has a 'Property To Let' section. It is essential to advertise there and this is where you should concentrate the bulk of your advertising campaign. You can adopt two approaches to local advertising: 1. You can advertise that you have properties to let without naming specific properties, and offer tenants a 'free search/location' service. 2. You can advertise specific properties to let, and simply wait for tenants to contact you about the property they are interested in. If you are advertising specific properties then the aim should be to achieve maximum response at minimum cost. Newspaper advertising is always expensive. Try to include only the most appealing points and write a small ad round those factors. For example: XYZ Area - two bedroomed flat - fully furnished - £75 per week. One Bed Flat - Close City Centre - Well appointed - £250 pcm. Fully furnished four bedroom luxury detached - Anytown - £500 pcm. When prospective tenants enquire you can then provide them with further details. Once your agency becomes established try to cover several properties with one generalised description. This means that several properties can be let from one GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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small ad! 3. Direct To Local Companies Large companies frequently move employees in and out of a given area. Some will be moving into an area with a view to buying there eventually, and others will be only on short contracts or visits. While you can help these people direct you can also offer your service direct to the companies, as they frequently help their employees to find accommodation, or even rent it for them on a company let. Contact the personnel department at the following institutions to introduce your service. Do this by telephone, letter or fax. They'll be glad to have their employee location problems solved, or at least made simpler. • local businesses • local authorities • emergency and armed services • hospitals • universities/colleges • construction companies 4. Posters and Window Cards Putting up a poster or sign on properties to advertise the fact that they are available costs very little, and is also a good way of getting free advertising for your letting agency in general! However, it is usually insufficient in itself as a way of letting a property and should only be used a sideline to other methods. Also, as an extra to your promotional activities you should consider placing cards/posters detailing your service in places such as shop windows, company, college and hospital notice boards. This kind of advertising is most effective when used to promote specific properties in the immediate local area. 5. Publishing Property Listings A brochure listing all the properties you have available is a useful marketing tool. You may not wish to do this when you are relatively new and have few properties, but you should certainly consider it long term. The listing may give either brief or lengthy descriptions of the properties involved. However, it should never give the actual addresses of the properties. This may result in unwelcome, unexpected visits from prospective tenants - or burglars! For the very best results, update your listing on a daily basis. This is easy to do if you have a PC with a word processor. Update the list as a property comes onto your books or is let, then print out a copy every lime it is requested. Make it known to clients that your list is right up to date. and that it is more accurate than expensive, printed brochures. A good tip is to pay for your listings by selling advertising to those who offer services to people wishing to move home. Removal companies, decorators, home furnishing suppliers etc. may want to advertise and just six adverts a month costing £50 each would pay all your stationery costs and maybe even turn a small profit! 6. Set Up A Website Once you are established and have a good selection of properties to let, you may wish to set up a website giving details of your service. This could list all your properties, together with a description and a photo graph. GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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GR Phelps edge: Setup and run an iProperty Club in your nearby area and you will attract lots of good contacts and referrals. As well as being a good way to promote your service to tenants (and also to landlords) a website can enable prospective tenants to search online for suitable properties, thus reducing the time and work involved in handling enquiries and searching your database yourself.

GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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WORKING WITH YOUR TARGET MARKETS As a letting agent you have two target markets: landlords and tenants. Each target market has its own requirements and we will study the requirements of each in this section. Working With Landlords Landlords can come from a number of different sources and back grounds, as we have already covered. However, despite their different reasons for being in the letting business, they all have very similar aims and objectives in letting their property: • They want a tenant who will pay the rent on time. • They want a tenant who will act responsibly and care for the property. • They want an agent who is thorough and efficient. • They want an agent who charges reasonable fees. Landlords often go to agencies because they have experienced bad episodes with previous tenants they have handled. For example, perhaps the tenant didn't pay the rent or did a 'moonlight flit. The fact that you will take care of all of this for them is a very important sales point of this type of service. It is also important to note that some landlords may have suffered poor service from other letting agents in the past. such as the agent didn't find enough tenants, or didn't deal with any problems that arose. Again, emphasising the personal nature of your service is a very good selling point for your agency. Most letting agents provide landlords with some or all of three types of letting service. These are usually as follows: Service one: Finding tenants for a property, arranging the tenancy and supervising the moving-in process. Service two: As service one, but also providing a rent collection ser vice, collecting the rent from the tenant and paying it to the landlord each month. Service three: As Service one and two, but also managing the property. This includes inspecting it periodically, arranging for any repairs and dealing with any problems. As a new agency, you do not have to offer all these services. Simply offer as many or as few services as you feel confident about offering, and have the time for. If you decide to offer services two and three it is also a good idea to allow landlords to choose which level of service they require.

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Landlord Review Offering A Rent Assessment and Advisory Service In most cases your landlord will usually have a general idea of what rent they wish to charge for their property. However, this is often very much a 'guesstimate' and one reason landlords will use your service is to obtain a professional assessment as to how much rent is realistically achievable. Deciding on the most appropriate rent is very much a balancing act. If you can show a landlord that their suggested rent is too low they will be delighted. But they will also be pleased if you can show it is too high and, by reducing it slightly, can fill the property immediately rather than waiting several weeks to find a tenant. The rental value of any given property depends partly on: a) The type, size and quality of the property b) The area in which it is located. However it depends mainly on: The market level of rents actually being achieved for similar properties in that area. You can advise your landlords on the most appropriate rent by keeping a close eye on the levels of rent being achieved in your area and making direct comparisons where possible. The important figure to bear in mind is the rents being asked for properties which are actually let, i.e. not those which stand empty.

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Working With Tenants On the face of it, the requirements of the tenant are very simple - they require accommodation. However, it is important that you match the tenant with the type of accommodation most suitable to them. Not only does this keep the tenant and the landlord happy, but makes the whole process much simpler for you too. A good way of matching up tenants with properties effectively is to fill out a tenant profile sheet for every prospective tenant who registers with you. This not only looks very professional when the tenant first contacts you, but allows you to do the matching as quickly as possible. Remember tenants will no doubt be contacting other agencies at the same time, so it is important to do the job promptly with minimum fuss A sample Tenant Profile Sheet is given at the end of this course. Be Professional. Always answer the telephone in a professional manner, i.e. "Good morning ABC Lettings. How can I help your If you are operating from home don't let any 'home' noises like children or dogs be heard, since this will give a poor impression. When you have taken the tenant's details tell them that you will search your database or listing of available properties for the most suitable one. Aim to get back to them the same day with details of the proper ties that are available. This will minimise competition from properties offered by other letting agents. CHECKLIST Key Points Covered Landlords and tenants have different reasons for doing business with you, and are sold' by different benefits arid features of your service. You can offer some or all of three distinct letting services. Three Letting Agency Services To Offer As we have already covered, most letting agencies offer one or more of three distinct services. In this section we will study more details of exactly what service you offer at each level. Service One: Basic Letting Service This service includes finding tenants, arranging the tenancy and supervising the move. 1. The first task to undertake with this service is to visit and inspect the property. When approached by a prospective landlord, make an appointment to meet them at the property to be let. 2.Ensure that the property is in a ready-to-let condition, i.e. it is habitable, no repair work is required and it is furnished to an appropriate standard (where the landlord wishes to let part or fully furnished). Discuss the rent required, and the type of tenants preferred. If the landlord is a first- time landlord, ask if he or she has any questions or queries about letting their property. There is no charge for this service, and no hard sell should be used. 3. Complete a property survey sheet. This records details of the property and can be used to match it with the most suitable tenant. A sample property survey sheet is provided at the end of this lesson.

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4. Assuming that the prospective landlord decides to go ahead with the letting through your agency complete a management agreement document. This explains on what basis you will be handling the letting. A sample management agreement document is provided at the end of this lesson. Give a copy of this to your new client. 5. Advertise the property, using the methods we have already studied. This should produce a number of enquiries. You can then match ten ants and properties and make appointments for them to view the premises. NB. Viewings must be by appointment only, and you should always be accompanied. 6. When a prospective tenant expresses a firm interest in a property their suitability should be checked. Ask for references and verify them. The subject of taking and processing references was studied in lesson five. 7. Draw up the tenancy and have it signed by the landlord and the tenant. 8. Compile an inventory for the property, and have it checked and signed by the tenant at the time they move in. Refer to lesson five for more information on inventories. 9. Collect a bond from the tenant. This guards against non-payment of rent or any damage to the property. The amount of a bond should be agreed with the landlord and paid over to them. 10. Notify gas, electricity, telephone and water companies, and the local authority, that a new tenant is moving in. This can be done by letter or by telephone. Note that it is the tenants responsibility to contact the companies of their choice to arrange for the new services they require to be provided. Charges For Service One The usual charge for this service would be 50 per cent of the first month's rent or £200, whichever is the greatest. Example: Finding tenants for a 4 bed house rented at £606.00 pan. 50 per cent of £606 = £303. Service Two: Rent Collection Service For this service you will usually be carrying out the service provided in service one but also providing a rent collection service. However, you may be approached by some landlords who only require you to collect their rent. This is a good service to offer to landlords who do not wish to be seen as a 'rent collector.' It is also ideal for landlords who live out of the area or abroad. Whatever the situation, rents are collected each month and forwarded to the landlord, less your commission payable. If possible your tenants should pay their rent by standing order, direct from their bank account. M you have to do then is check to ensure that it is paid each month. However, some tenants who do not have bank accounts or who have their rent paid as housing benefit may pay in cash, which you can collect door to door. Housing Benefit: Where a tenant's rent is covered by housing benefit you can arrange to have this paid directly to you. In this case you should request a pretenancy determination from the local authority. This W show how much the local authority will pay for the tenant. The balance (if any) is payable by the tenant themselves Rental Accounts: When you forward the rents to the landlord you should GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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prepare a rental account for all their properties showing what has been paid, what has been deducted (commission etc.) and any amounts that are overdue. A sample rental account form is provided at the end of this course. Problems: If the tenant cannot/will not pay the rent then you should report the matter to the landlord. With this service you are not required to enforce payment of the rent unless the landlord wishes you to do so. This would be charged at extra cost. See later in the lesson for details. Charges For Service Two A reasonable charge for this service would be the set up fee as in service one, plus 7.5 per cent of all the monthly or annual rents collected. Example: Finding tenants for a two bedroom fiat rented at £346.00 pcm. 50 per cent of = £173, therefore a minimum of £200 charged. 7.5 per cent of monthly rentals collected is £25.95. Setup fee is £200+ (12 x £25.95) = £511.40. Service Three: Full Management Service As well as the duties carried out in service models one and two, a full management service requires you to look after' the property much the same as you would your own let property. With a full management service you should make regular inspections of the property on an agreed schedule (normally every 3 or 6 months) and report back to the landlord on the condition of the property and any maintenance or repairs needed to keep the property in good order. Then, If the landlord requires you to do so you should instruct appropriate tradesmen to carry them out (it is usual for letting agents to be able to organise minor but urgent repairs under approx. £1O0/ in value without consulting the landlord at all). Alternatively, some landlords will prefer you to simply inform them of what needs to be done and have them make the arrangements. In all cases the landlord pays for any work that is required. In the event of an emergency, such as a burst pipe or storm damage, the agent is usually authorised to carry out essential repairs to 'make good' the property, again at the landlord's expense. When offering a full management service you may find it useful to build up a contact list of local tradesmen to help with property maintenance, i.e. builders, plumbers, roofing contractors, locksmiths etc. Charges For Service Three A full maintenance service would normally cost the landlord 10-15 per cent of the annual rental charge, plus £200 for a re-letting charge as necessary. This is for providing the service and not carrying out the work. Example: Providing tenants for a 4 bed house with a rental of per calendar month. £606 x 15 per cent = £90.90. Annual fees are therefore £90.90 x 12 = £1 .090.80. All of these charging methods are attractive and acceptable to landlords because you only get paid when you find them a tenant. NB. These fee levels are based on instructions being given on ONE property. You may wish to give discounts to landlords who let several properties through you. Charges To Tenants As a letting agent you should note that under the Accommodation Agencies Act 1953, it is illegal to charge tenants simply for GR Phelps lettings agent’s guide – www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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registering their requirements or Just showing them lists of accommodation, In addition to this it is, of course, a good selling point for your service that it is totally free to tenants, Tenants may be charged certain amounts In connection with preparing the lease and administering the tenancy. However, in most cases a let ting agent derives all their Income from the landlord, not the tenant.

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Property Letting: Administrative Procedures Use this checklist to help ensure that all tasks are completed when letting each new property. 1. Take full details of the tenant on the tenant profile sheet, if not already done. • Take references from the referees given by the tenant and process them. 2. If the references are satisfactory tell the landlord that you have obtained a suitable tenant and obtain his or her agreement to the letting. 3. When the landlord has agreed to the tenancy, make an official written offer, offering the tenancy to the tenant and outlining the terms. A sample letter which can be used for this purpose is provided at the end of this course. Also, obtain a deposit from them, this could be equivalent to the bond payable on the property. 4. Agree a date to transfer the property which suits the tenant, you and the landlord. Bear In mind when the current tenancy ends, if appropriate. 5. Inform local council and utilities that the occupant has changed as soon as you know the completion date (The new tenant must still contact them to take out a contract for service of the utilities they require). 6. On the day of the transfer: - Complete, sign and witness the tenancy agreement. 7. Obtain a month's rent in advance (this is in addition to the deposit). - Ensure utility meters are read where appropriate. 8. -Supply new tenant with an inventory and have them check/sign it. 9. Transfer keys to the property. 10. Send tenancy agreement to the Stamp Duty Office for stamping, where relevant, together with appropriate fee if any (See later for details). 11. Send the landlord a completion pack containing the following information • A copy of your correspondence with the tenant, If any. – • Their copy of the tenancy agreement. – • Copies of references. • Details of the date when they will receive the rent, - An invoice for your service. 12. Pay the deposit/bond and the rentals (less your commission) to the landlord, ideally within seven days of them being received by you. Make sure payments are made promptly and keep the landlord informed at all times. This way they win continue to use your letting agency for many years to come. GR Phelps Edge: We can do all this for you.

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IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE LETTING AGENT Creating A Tenancy Creating a tenancy may seem complicated but, as we studied in the last lesson, it is not. You do not need a solicitor. Most properties will be let on an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement although there are other types. See lesson five for details. If the landlord has, or wishes to have, their own tenancy agreement created specifically for them then they can do this. However, the extra cost would be payable by them. Two copies of the tenancy agreement are required. One stays with the tenant. The other should go to the landlord. It is, however, useful to keep a copy for yourself. This should be a photocopy and not a third original Student Lets: If it is agreed that the property should be let on a shared house' basis to students then it Is usual for rent to be charged at 100 per cent for nine months of the year and at 50 per cent for the summer vacation period U. e. July 1 to September 30), in cases where the tenants take a 12 month tenancy. In this case, you would receive only 50 per cent of your usual fee in those months. This should not be considered a problem, since the rents for these properties are frequently higher than similar properties not occupied by students, and this compensates for any shortfall. Landlord Responsibilities Just as you must be fair and honest with landlords then it is important that landlords are always fair and honest with you. Stress to them the importance of this at your first meeting. The landlord must provide clear and correct information regard- big the owners or joint owners of the property to the agent. This has important implications for the security of tenure enjoyed by the client, i.e. you should ensure that no joint owners have a right of residence in the property. If the landlord has a mortgage secured on the property then they must obtain permission from the bank or building society who holds the mortgage in order to let it. The only exception is if they have a buy to let mortgage, which by definition infers that the property will be let. •

The landlord is responsible for the buildings insurance of the property. They should advise their insurance company that the property is to be let as this may affect the Insurance. To clarify these points, ask the landlord to sign a landlord's declaration. A sample wording for this document is given later. The landlord is required to keep the exterior and structure of the premises in good repair, and also keep the utilities in good repair. The exact nature of what must be done is normally stipulated in the lease, and not decided by the agent. Gas Safety Checks. As we studied in lesson five landlords are responsible for the annual testing of gas appliances in let property. They can either arrange this work themselves, or instruct you to arrange it.

If you arrange it all costs should be passed on to them. If they arrange it, you should ask for copies of the inspection documentation, although you are not legally required to have them. Whatever the arrangements, this work is always the landlord's responsibility legally, although as a responsible agent you should always ensure it is done

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Responsibilities Of The Letting Agent A letting agent should never accept responsibility, or be held responsible, for the actions of the tenant, i.e. that the tenant will care for the property properly, not cause any damage or fail to pay the rent. However, you should use your best endeavours to ensure that the property is used properly and kept in good condition, and inform the landlord immediately where this is not the case or where the rent falls into arrears. Should tenants cause damage to the fittings or fixtures, or if an item is lost or stolen, then the agent should arrange replacement and collect the cost from the tenant, but should advise the landlord of the situation and agree the cost with them before doing so. If the tenant leaves the property in a condition where it needs to be cleaned before it is re-let, then the agent should arrange this with a professional cleaning service and charge the cost to the tenant. Normally this can be deducted from their deposit. An agent does not normally agree to arrange repairs or rectify damage made before the agreement takes effect, or once the agreement has terminated. This includes after the last tenant has left if it is not intended to re-let the property. Repossession Of The Property Unless the landlord specifies that they require repossession of the property on a certain date, it is normally assumed that the agent will continue letting and re-letting the property on a continuous basis. In most situations, the tenant will rent the property on a shorthold tenancy basis (see lesson five). This entitles the landlord to legal repossession of the property at the end of the tenancy agreement. The landlord should state at the outset of the arrangement either: (i) When they win require repossession of the property, or (ii) The maximum period of tenancy to be granted at any one time. Should the tenant refuse to hand back the property at the end of the tenancy, fail to pay the rent or do anything else which causes the land lord to wish to terminate the tenancy then a court order must be sought to evict them, as studied in lesson five. The landlord may decide to handle this themselves, or they may wish the agency to handle it for them. If they wish you to handle this procedure for them then they will still be liable for all court fees, solicitor's fees and your fees for handling the procedure. It is possible to arrange insurance for landlords against the costs of obtaining repossession of a property in these cases. Being able to arrange such insurance can be an extra selling point for your agency. GR Phelps edge: We can manage all financial transactions, including lodging and management of deposits. A number of properties are let by landlords who are resident overseas (eg. expatriates, armed forces members, tax exiles etc.). You should always check whether the landlord is a resident overseas for tax purposes, as this has an important implication for income tax and for your agency. NB. Some landlords to whom this applies may spend considerable periods in the UK but may still be officially resident overseas for tax purposes so always check.

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If you know or suspect that the landlord is an overseas resident you must abide by the rules of the Non Resident Landlord's Tax Scheme. This scheme is operated by the Inland Revenue to ensure that non resident landlords pay any income tax which they are due to pay. In these circumstances, a landlord has two options: (i) He or she can either register Ms/her Interest as a landlord with the Inland Revenue and pay tax on his/her rental income direct to them. In this case, you can pay them their rental income gross. (ii) If he/she does not wish to do this then the letting agent must deduct a sum equal to the current basic rate of income tax, less deductible expenses, from any payments made to them and pay this to the Inland Revenue. If your agency deals with any non resident landlords then you should register to operate the Non Resident Landlord's Tax Scheme within 30 days of making your first payment to a non resident landlord. This is done by applying to The Centre for NonResidents using application form NRL4. You should note that it is an offence to handle lettings for a landlord who is either not registered with the Inland Revenue or where tax is not deducted from their payments and the Inland Revenue may hold the agent liable for payment of the tax even where they have not collected it. Exception: If you do not collect the rent or any other fees you do not need to operate this scheme. For more information and to register, contact: The Centre for Non- Residents, Unit 367k St. John House, Merton Road, Bootle, Mersey-side L69 9BB; Tel: 0151 472 6208; E-mail: non-residents@lnlandrevenue.gov.uk Stamp Duty & Leases When a tenancy is created, a copy of the lease must be stamped by the Stamp Duty Office of the Inland Revenue and a stamp duty or government tax paid on it where relevant. If this is not done, its provisions cannot be enforced in law should it be necessary, although the tenancy is still valid. As part of your service you should send off a copy of the tenancy to the relevant Stamp Duty Office within 30 days to be stamped, before forwarding the tenancy to the landlord. As is the case for stamp duty on property purchase, stamp duty on leases varies according to the amount of rent payable and is subject to periodic review. If a premium has been paid for the lease this is also taken into account when calculating the stamp duty. Most short and medium term lettings for domestic properties will qualify for stamp duty at zero per cent, one per cent or a fixed duty of £5 depending on the length of the tenancy and the average rent. This expense can be passed on to the tenant. For more information on stamp duty, and to find the relevant office for your area, call 0845 603 0135. Website: www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk/so

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Extra Profits For The Letting Agent When you set up a letting agency a number of other opportunities will be available, enabling you to offer extra services and generate extra profits. Here are some of the services you can offer: Management Of Communal Areas If you are handling the letting of property which comprises several flats within one building all owned by the same landlord, then you can provide management of the communal areas and generate an extra income. You can also offer this service to blocks of flats for which you do not act as the letting agent. This work involves the management and running of the communal areas such as any car park, gardens, corridors and stairways. It includes jobs such as parking control, gardening and grass cutting, cleaning, decorating and maintenance, such as painting or changing light bulbs, and being on hand to deal with emergencies, such as breakins or lift repairs. Such a service is very easy to provide. Simply engage some suitable contractors, eg. gardeners or contract cleaners to carry out the work as necessary. Charge the cost of these services, plus extra for your time in organising them. A sum of £30- per hour is typical for such services. These charges are usually levied on tenants. However, they may be included in the rent in which case you will be paid by the landlord. Guaranteed Letting Schemes Guaranteed letting schemes can be very profitable for the letting agent. Guaranteed letting schemes operate on the basis that a landlord letting their own property cannot necessarily expect a property to be occupied by a paying tenant all the time. As tenants move in and out, there are bound to be periods when the property is not earning an income for the landlord. This can be a problem where the landlord is dependent on this income, I.e. to repay a mortgage! or if they are just small scale landlords. You can offer a guaranteed letting scheme to your landlords which promises that they will receive a minimum monthly income throughout the period you are handling the letting whether the property is occupied or not. This guaranteed income would normally be around 75 per cent of the annual rent achievable if the property was permanently occupied. Thus, if a flat can be let for £400 a month the annual rent would be £4,800. You might offer to pay the landlord £3,600 per year regardless of whether the flat is occupied or not. Many smaller landlords will find such a guarantee attractive. As a letting agent you make your profit from a guaranteed letting scheme by using your resources to ensure that the property is actually let for a period exceeding 75 per cent of the year This way, you stand to pocket 25 per cent of the annual rental (in the example given above, that's £1,200) as extra profit. Offering a guaranteed letting scheme involves an element of risk and may not be something which you wish to offer when you first start. However, once you are established and are confident that you can find plenty of tenants to rent particular types of property it can be very profitable.

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Commercial Lettings You can offer a letting agency for commercial property. eg. offices, shops and factory units. This operates in exactly the same way as for residential lettings. Buying Agency Services A buying agency not only lets property for landlords but locates and arranges the purchase of property which is suitable for letting too. This service is ideal for offering to large scale landlords and serious investors who do not have the lime to locate and purchase suitable properties. For more information on the work of a buying agent refer to lesson two. GR Phelps Affiliate: If you appoint other companies or individuals as affiliates or associates you will receive an override commission on any revenue they may bring in. Please see www.grphelpsonline.com for more details.

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GR Phelps Find a tenant service

How find a better tenant faster If you are an ‘active’ landlord or like to keep control, we can help you find a tenant for a low cost and maximum reach, whilst maintaining personal control of your tenants and properties. Our simple and cost-effective service will advertise your property for rent quickly and prominently. Our fixed-fee tenant finding service is £49* and includes: Listing on all main websites, including Rightmove, Findaproperty, Rentright, Lettingweb, Gumtree, Globrix, Zoopla, Prime Location, and many others (Listing on these sites will reach millions of property-hunters, and often a better quality of tenant) Easy to use website listing facility with upto 20 pictures and google maps integration Free rental market comparison n request We take all calls and emails and send them straight to you without delay You conduct viewings and meet tenants Free credit checking and referencing (charge to tenant) Full UK coverage Upload today, online tomorrow Your advert online for a full six weeks, unlimited changes

Optional services: Accompanied viewing - POA TO LET signboard Inventory check – POA Tenant check in / check out service Fixed Price Full letting and property management – call *All prices plus VAT

One agent to cover all your UK properties.

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Useful documents Online links Copies of the many forms and the AST letting agreement contained in this guie are available to download from www.grphelpsonline.com under the Articles section ‘Letting newsletter’. Please register to get your free links to dozens of documents, articles and useful links. If you have any questions: info@grpheps.co.uk 0871 288 3834

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AGENCY AGREEMENT / 1 LETTING ONLY SERVICE 1. Providing a rental valuation of the property and giving advice as required. 2. Advertising as necessary, interviewing and selecting tenants, arranging/carrying out viewings. 3. Taking up references and credit checks as appropriate. 4. Advising on the transfer of gas, electricity, and telephone accounts. 5. Collecting the first advance rental and security deposit. 6. Drawing up a standard Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement and arranging signature by the tenant. If you require our Services beyond this point, please enquire about our Full Management Service. FEES Our fee for the Letting Only Service is ........................................... This fee is payable at the commencement of the tenancy and will be deducted from the monies received by us as your Agent as described above. Should the tenancy be brought short for any reason, no reimbursement shall be due. TERMS Whilst we shall use our best commercial judgement in the selection of tenants and the execution of our Service hereunder, we shall not under any circumstances be liable for nonpayment of rent or any other outcome of a tenancy or for any legal costs resulting therefrom. Insurance policies are recommended to cover such risks.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I/we* confirm: 1) That I/we* wish to appoint you to act on my/our* behalf in accordance with this Agreement. 2) That I am/we are* the sole owner/joint owners* of the property appended below. 3) That I/we* have been advised of my/our* responsibilities for gas, furniture and fire, and electrical safety, and undertake to ensure compliance with the relevant legislation. * Delete as applicable

Full address of property to be Let: .................................................................................................................…....... ....................................................................................................................................... Signed: ....................................................................................................................................... ............................... Print Name/s: ................................................................................ Date: .................. (IF PROPERTY IS JOINTLY OWNED ALL PARTIES SHOULD SIGN)

Signed by or on behalf of Agent: ...............S.............……................. Date: ..............

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AGENCY AGREEMENT /2 Find a Tenant Service 1. Providing a rental valuation of the property and giving advice as required. 2. Advertising as necessary for the landlord to carry out viewings 3. Taking up references and credit checks as appropriate. Options 1. Collecting the first advance rental and security deposit. 2. Drawing up a standard Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement and arranging signature by the tenant. If you require our Services beyond this point, please enquire about our Full Management Service. FEES Our fee for the Letting Only Service is £49 + vat (£59) This fee is payable at the commencement of the tenancy and will be deducted from the monies received by us as your Agent as described above. Should the tenancy be brought short for any reason, no reimbursement shall be due. TERMS Whilst we shall use our best commercial judgement in the selection of tenants and the execution of our Service hereunder, we shall not under any circumstances be liable for nonpayment of rent or any other outcome of a tenancy or for any legal costs resulting therefrom. Insurance policies are recommended to cover such risks.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I/we* confirm: 1) That I/we* wish to appoint you to act on my/our* behalf in accordance with this Agreement. 2) That I am/we are* the sole owner/joint owners* of the property appended below. 3) That I/we* have been advised of my/our* responsibilities for gas, furniture and fire, and electrical safety, and undertake to ensure compliance with the relevant legislation. * Delete as applicable

Full address of property to be Let: .................................................................................................................….............. ................................................................................................................................... ................................................................................................................................... Signed: ....................................................................................................................................... ............................... Print Name/s: ................................................................................ Date: .................. (IF PROPERTY IS JOINTLY OWNED ALL PARTIES SHOULD SIGN)

Signed by or on behalf of Agent: ............................……................. Date: ..............

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TENANT ENQUIRY FORM REQUIREMENTS: No of bedrooms: …………………. Furn / Part / Unfurn: ………………………………… Area/s: ………………………………………………………………………………………… Other requirements: …………………………………………………………………………. Max rent: ………………………….. Move reqd by: ……………………………………….. APPLICANT DETAILS: Name: ……………………………... Occupation: ………………………………………….. Address: ………………………………………………………………………………………. Telephone: Work: ……..………… Home: ………..………… Other: …………………… Smokers: ………………………….. Children (ages): ………. Pets: …………………….. Total no of persons: ……………... Sexes and occupations of each: …..……………………………………………………….. NOTES Date of enquiry: ………………….. Origin (where heard of us): ………………………… Remarks: ……………………………………………………………………………………… Record of viewings: Date and time

Property

Result / Remarks

Continue overleaf if necessary

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TENANT APPLICATION FORM Please note: A copy of this form must be completed by each intended occupier over 18 years of age, and by any guarantor. Surname (Mr/Mrs/Ms):

First names:

Home Tel:

Work Tel:

Date of birth:

Present Address: Postcode: Owner/tenant/other (specify):

How long there:

Landlord/Agent:

Name:

Reason to leave:

Address: Postcode:

Tel:

Fax:

If less than 3 years at the above address: Previous Address: Postcode: Owner/tenant/other (specify):

How long there:

Landlord/Agent:

Name:

Reason to leave:

Address: Postcode:

Tel:

Current Employer:

Name:

Fax:

Address: Postcode:

Tel:

Position held: Date commenced:

Fax: Annual Salary:

Contact: Name:

Position:

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If less than 2 years with current employer please give previous employer's details overleaf.

Page 1 of 2 Accountant if self-employed:

Name:

Address: Postcode:

Tel:

Your Bank:

Name:

Fax:

Branch Address: Sort Code: - -

A/c name:

Personal Referee:

Name:

A/c no:

Address: Postcode:

Tel:

Fax:

Occupation:

Relationship:

Time known:

General: Do you smoke?

Yes / No

Do you intend to keep any pets? If so please give details:

Yes / No

Will any children be living with you? If so please give ages:

Yes / No

Do you have a criminal record?

Yes / No

Have you ever had any County Court Judgements against yourself?

Yes / No

Have you ever been evicted from or asked to leave a property you were renting for any reason?

Yes / No

Declaration:

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I declare that the information I have provided on this form is true and correct, and hereby authorise you to verify the details given and to seek references as required. I understand that this does not represent any offer or contract of any nature. I further understand that if you decline to offer me a tenancy no explanation will be given. Signed by Applicant:

Date:

Additional information may be included here:

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Employee reference for letting purposes An Employer Address x x x Attn: The Personnel Officer Date PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL Dear Re: (Name of applicant) The above-named, who we understand is employed by your Company, has applied to us for the tenancy of a property for which we are the Letting and Managing Agents. We would be grateful therefore, if you would provide us, in the strictest confidence, with a letter to include the following information 1. how long s/he has been employed by your company and in what capacity 2. his/her current salary 3. whether you can recommend him/her for our purposes. Thank you for your assistance in this matter. Yours sincerely,

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Landlord reference

Prior Landlord Address x x x Date PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL Dear Re: (Name of applicant) The above named, who we understand is currently renting / has recently rented accommodation from you, has applied to us for the tenancy of a property for which we are the Letting and Managing Agents. I should be grateful therefore, if you would be kind enough to complete the questionnaire below, tear off, and return it to us in the enclosed SAE. Your reply will of course be treated in the strictest confidence. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter. Yours sincerely,

CONFIDENTIAL QUESTIONNAIRE How much was / is the rent ?

£ ………

Have rental payments been regular and on time ?

Yes / No

Have the property and contents been treated with respect ?

Yes / No

Can you recommend the above-named as a tenant ?

Yes / No

Any other comments: Signed: ……………………………….. Print name: ……………………………… Date: …………………..

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Bank reference Applicant’s Bank plc Address x x x Date PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL Dear Sir / Madam, Re: Applicant’s name and Account number The above-named has applied to us for the tenancy of a property for which we are the Letting and Managing Agents. The rental / her proportion of the rental will be £xxx per calendar month. I would be grateful therefore, if you will provide a reference to include your opinion of the applicant’s ability to meet this financial commitment, and reply to our bankers as below. The applicant’s signed authority is enclosed. Our Bankers and A/c details: Bank name: Branch address: Sort code: A/c name: A/c number: Thank you for your assistance in this matter. Yours faithfully,

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Guarantor letter Note: This is a legal document. Sign it only if you wish to be bound by its contents. If you are in any doubt you should first show it to a solicitor. To:

GUARANTEE (Please use capitals throughout) TENANT APPLICANT Full name: _________________________________________________________________ Address of property to be let:

GUARANTOR Full name: _________________________________________________________________ Home address:

Occupation: ________________________________________________________ Relationship to the above named applicant: _______________________________ DECLARATION BY GUARANTOR In consideration of a tenancy of the above property to be let being granted to the above named tenant applicant, I hereby agree to accept full liability for, and to discharge to you without undue delay all rental and any other lawful debt or liability which may be due or overdue for payment by the above-named applicant in respect of that applicant’s proposed tenancy of the said property. This is a continuing guarantee and security and my liability under it shall not be affected by your giving time or any other indulgence to the applicant. Signature of Guarantor: _________________________ Date: ________________ Notes: (Delete before printing) 1) The Guarantor should be fully referenced as though s/he were a tenant. 2) This document should be completed and signed in the presence of the landlord or landlord's agent.

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Tenant confirmation A Tenant Address x x x Date Dear Re: Your proposed tenancy of (Address of property) Following satisfactory replies to our reference enquiries, we are pleased to confirm our offer of a tenancy on the above property, subject only to contract. We would request therefore, that you telephone our offices to arrange a mutually convenient appointment with our consultant, to sign the tenancy agreement, and to pay over the necessary deposit and advance rental, at your earliest convenience. Please note that if you wish the tenancy to commence within 14 days, the abovementioned balance will need to be made in the form of cleared funds (i.e. no current account cheques). Yours sincerely,

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Tenant decline letter A Tenant Address x x x Date

Dear Re: (Address of property) Following your recent application for a tenancy, we are now in receipt of replies to our reference enquiries. Unfortunately, after careful consideration, the information obtained leads our client to consider your application as unacceptable. We regret therefore that we are unable to proceed further with your application to rent the above property. Yours sincerely,

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HOLDING DEPOSIT RECEIPT To:……………………………………………………… Date: ………………………….. Re proposed tenancy of:

Planned commencement date: ………………………………………………………….

First advance rental

£

Security deposit ** Admin fees @ £ p/p Total due Less Holding Deposit paid * Balance due

£

* The above balance must be paid in full before your tenancy starts in cleared funds, i.e. by bankers draft, building society savings account cheque, or cash. Current account bank cheques will not be accepted within 14 days of the tenancy start date. ** The Agency Admin fee is payable per person and covers the costs of referencing, credit checking, agreement preparation and ancillary costs. Conditions: 1. Payment of the Holding Deposit ensures that the above accommodation will not be offered to any other applicant by this company until after the above-entered planned commencement date. This is a NON-REFUNDABLE DEPOSIT and will be forfeit as liquidated damages in the event that you withdraw or otherwise fail to take up the tenancy by or on the above date. If, however, this Agency or the Landlord decline to grant the tenancy it will be refunded, less the Agency Admin fee/s. 2. The proposed tenancy is offered 'subject to contract' and is conditional upon: 1. The receipt of satisfactory references and/or guarantees 2. The receipt of cleared funds as above 3. The signing by all parties of the tenancy agreement.

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4. Particulars of the above accommodation and proposed tenancy have been described to you in good faith from information received, and no responsibility will be accepted for errors, omissions or mis-statements. To be completed by applicant/s: I understand and agree with the above terms and conditions and to pay the Agency Fee/s as shown. Signed: …………….…….. Name: ……………………. Date: …………………..

Signed: …………….…….. Print Name: ……………………. Date: ………………….. (All proposed tenant applicants to sign. Continue overleaf if necessary).

IMPORTANT: Once your tenancy start date is confirmed, you should contact the gas, electricity and telephone companies to arrange transfer of accounts to your name/s. Please bear in mind that at least three working days notice is required if the service is currently disconnected.

Telephone numbers: Gas: ………………… Electricity: …..…………….

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PROPERTY SUMMARY Address:

HEATING Type (gas, economy 7 etc) Make of boiler

Timer position

Themostat position

Timer position

Set-up instructions

WATER/PLUMBING Main stopcock position

Other stopcocks

Notes

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ELECTRICITY Meter position

Fusebox position

Notes

GAS Meter position

Notes

OTHER SERVICES

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Inventory form INVENTORY OF CONTENTS (and Schedule of Condition)

of:

Item

Page

Condition

Existing damage

of

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Last page of Inventory of Contents (and Schedule of Condition)

of:

Notes:

Schedule of condition:

Ingoing check:

Outgoing check:

General remarks:

General remarks:

Gas meter reading:

Gas meter reading:

Electricity meter reading:

Electricity meter reading:

This Inventory & Schedule of Condition checked and agreed at: on

This Inventory & Schedule of Condition checked and agreed at: on

Signed by the tenant/s:

Signed by the tenant/s:

Signed by the landlord’s agent:

Signed by the landlord’s agent:

Page

of

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Welcome letter A Tenant Property address x x x

Date

Dear Re: Your tenancy at the above address I enclose your copies of documents relating to your tenancy, including the agreement, the inventory, your financial statement, and a standing order form for rental payments. Please complete the standing order form, and pass it to your bank without delay. As you know, we are the managing agents for the property, and if you should have any queries about your tenancy, or if any maintenance or repair problems arise, please call us during office hours and we will do our best to help. Finally, I will take this opportunity to wish you a pleasant stay in your new home. Yours sincerely,

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Overdue rent A Tenant Address x x x

Date

Dear IMPORTANT – OVERDUE RENT Further to our telephone call of xxxxx it appears that your rent on the above property which was due on xxxxx, remains unpaid. This is perhaps an oversight on your part, but if further delays occur, it can become a very serious matter. Please therefore forward payment immediately to rectify the situation. If you have any problems in making payment as above, please telephone us to discuss the matter right away. Yours sincerely,

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Overdue rent A Tenant x x x

Date Dear IMPORTANT – OVERDUE RENT Having received no reply to our letter date xxx regarding your overdue rent, we write to advise you that if the arrears are not rectified immediately, our next course of action must be to issue a Notice under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 (as amended), REQUIRING REPOSSESSION OF THE PROPERTY. Please note that it is also our policy to take enforcement action to recover any arrears through the Courts. This will involve you in additional costs, and is likely to affect your ability to obtain credit, and to secure future rented accommodation. To avoid further action as above, you must contact us immediately to arrange payment of your arrears. Yours sincerely,

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Checkout NOTES FOR TENANTS Your End of Tenancy Checkout - Handing back the Property In accordance with the terms of your tenancy agreement, you have two main obligations to consider when ending your tenancy: The property and contents should be handed back in the same condition as they were at the beginning of the tenancy, but allowing for normal wear and tear. The rent must be up to date, and all bills settled. The Checkout We will contact you in due course to make an appointment time for your checkout. This will need to be fixed for a time when you are literally ready to close the door and hand back the keys. During the checkout we will check the condition of the entire property and contents against the inventory, and record gas and electricity meter readings if relevant. The following notes are intended to help you prepare for the checkout, so that the event runs smoothly, and to minimise the risk of misunderstandings, deductions from your deposit, last minute problems or surprises: The Inventory It is a good idea to start your preparations now by running through your copy of the inventory to remind yourself about the contents and condition at the start of the tenancy, and to check for damaged or missing items. Normal Wear and Tear Please note that normal wear and tear does not include damage, nor excessive wear and tear. Preparing the Property and Contents All soft furnishings especially carpets, curtains and mattresses should be left clean, paying special attention to any heavy stains and marks if applicable. This may mean having carpets professionally cleaned, and curtains dry cleaned and pressed. All kitchen utensils, equipment and appliances should be cleaned, the fridge and freezer defrosted, food should be removed from all the cupboards and all hard surfaces should be washed down and cleaned, including the kitchen floor, which must not be 'sticky'. All bathroom/WC furniture and fittings should be thoroughly cleaned with a proprietory bathroom cleaner/disinfectant paying particular attention to any stains or marks. All the woodwork, skirting boards etc. should be washed down. Any linen, towels etc. should be laundered and pressed and left in the appropriate places. All items of furniture should be dusted, cleaned and left in the appropriate rooms. Page 1 of 2

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All electrical goods and appliances, including light bulbs and any garden equipment should be in good working order. Gardens and patio should be free from weeds and lawns cut. No rubbish should be left on the premises, except in the wheeliebin. All sets of keys must be handed over. Internal keys for cupboards, windows etc. should be left in their locks. Final Bills You should contact the appropriate offices for telephone, water rates, and council tax and arrange for final bills. For gas and electricity it is generally easier to inform them of the final meter reading after the checkout. We will record these reading during the checkout. Mail Forwarding You should make arrangements with the Royal Mail. Viewings It is possible that we may contact you to arrange to show the property to prospective tenants. It is a condition of your tenancy agreement that you allow us to do so. However we will give reasonable notice, and endeavour to do so at your convenience. Return of Deposit Please note that your deposit will not be returned at the checkout. It will be refunded by company cheque sent by 1st class mail to your forwarding address normally within 24 hours. Where it is necessary for us to obtain estimates for replacements or remedial works, there may be a further delay, but we will endeavour to keep this to a minimum. Pre Checkout Visit It is our normal practice to carry out a pre-checkout visit to the property, about 2 weeks before you are due to leave. The purpose of this visit is to point out to you any particular areas which require your attention. Once the final checkout has taken place, you will not have access to the property, and therefore any remedial work will have to be carried out by contractors at your expense. This preliminary visit usually takes only a few minutes, and we will contact you shortly to make an appointment. We look forward to speaking to you shortly. In the meantime if you have any queries please do not hesitate to call during office hours.

Page 2 of 2

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GR Phelps Property lettings start up training manual  
GR Phelps Property lettings start up training manual  

www.grphelpsonline.com GR Phelps Property lettings start up training manual www.estate-agency-opportunity.co.uk

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