Tips For Landlords Using Letting Agents

Unfortunately, the stereotype is true. A large portion of this industry is polluted with cowboys, especially when it comes to Letting agents. I know this from years of experience, having dealt with many unsavory characters that were more than happy to utilise unethical tactics. Sadly, I probably haven’t dealt with the worst of them; I’ve heard too many bad stories that far exceed my encounters.

With so many rogue letting agents operating around the country it is extremely easy for landlords, especially new landlords, to get swindled into bad deals, which ultimately equates to being overcharged for a very unsatisfactory service.

In this section I have put together a list of useful tips and advice on how to deal with letting agents, and more importantly, how to differentiate the good from the ugly. I’ve also written about some of my experiences, particularly the bad. Hopefully there’s something in here for you to learn from.

Over the years I’ve stopped using traditional high-street letting agents, I just don’t trust them anymore and I begrudge paying for poor service. But I do understand that they provide a service that some landlords need. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of good, hardworking agents out there, but they’re getting rarer by the day. As a result, I’ve personally started managing and finding my own properties through the help of online letting agents. If you’re not sure what they are, you can find out more about online letting agents.

How To Make A Complaint Against A Letting Agent

How To Make A Complaint Against A Letting Agent

Tips For Using Letting Agents / 173 Comments
Which Letting Agent? How To Find A Good Letting Agent

Which Letting Agent? How To Find A Good Letting Agent

Tips For Using Letting Agents / 6 Comments
Avoiding Letting Agents & Crazy Maintenance Fees

Avoiding Letting Agents & Crazy Maintenance Fees

17 Jun 2015 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 23 Comments

If you wake up in the mornings finding yourself in midst of the war-torn surroundings of the lettings industry, life has probably thrown you a bunch of lemons and things probably haven’t turned out like you had once planned. If it’s any consolation, believe it or not, it was never a childhood dream of mine […]

Should New Landlords Use A Letting Agent?

Should New Landlords Use A Letting Agent?

15 Jan 2014 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 31 Comments

Bit late, but happy New Year everyone! I hope you all got shit-faced and participated in at least one stupid activity that you’ll regret for the rest of your life. I know I did, and that’s why I’m probably dripping with gonorrhea right now. All over my keyboard and shit. Anyways… A few days ago […]

My Letting Agent Lied To Me

My Letting Agent Lied To Me

26 Mar 2013 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 8 Comments

A friend of mine recently told me about one of her letting woes as a landlord; her misery had me so amused that I convinced her to quickly jot her story down so I could share it with ya’ll. My initial plan was to regurgitate the corpse of her notes, and develop it into an […]

Letting Agents Reservation Fee

Letting Agents Reservation Fee

17 Apr 2012 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 9 Comments

So, who watched Watchdog last week (Thursday, 12th April)? Who, who, who? On the Rogue Trader’s section of the programme, they exposed a couple of shit-for-brain douche-bags, and nothing gave me greater pleasure than watching them squirm on national TV, while attempting to plead their case with nonsensical dribble. It was pathetic, like watching a […]

Overpriced Letting Agent Application Fees

Overpriced Letting Agent Application Fees

11 Jan 2012 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 38 Comments

A few years ago I wrote a blog post (feels shitting bizarre that I’ve been blogging for so long and I can refer to stuff I wrote years ago) about Letting Agents Charging Tenants An Admin Fee– perhaps some of you veterans remember it. My gripe was, I couldn’t quite understand WHY letting agents charged […]

Use Letting Agents With A ‘Safe Agent’ Mark

Use Letting Agents With A ‘Safe Agent’ Mark

14 Sep 2011 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 3 Comments

As bucket loads of letting agents are continuing to crash and burn at the mercy of the turbulent economic climate, left in-front of the closed door remains a trial disgruntled landlords that have been left out of pocket as agents are sinking before settling their final payments and/or returning tenancy security deposits. Unfortunately, the queue […]

Do ‘Tenant References’ Provided By Letting Agents Actually Mean Anything?

Do ‘Tenant References’ Provided By Letting Agents Actually Mean Anything?

22 Mar 2011 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 26 Comments

Over the years I’ve received several letting agents contact me to get references for either current or previous tenants of mine. You know, just so they can make sure their not creating tenancies for lowlife parasites. It’s a pretty normal process, and I’m sure many landlords have been contacted by agents for the same reason. […]

Random Letting Agent Took It Upon Themselves To Find Me Tenants

Random Letting Agent Took It Upon Themselves To Find Me Tenants

15 Sep 2010 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 11 Comments

The story I’m about to tell is a bit weird. Weird in a slightly psychotic way, not weird in an unexpected/unusual way, because the more I think about it, the less I’m surprised by it. So, check it… I already briefly discussed that I have tenants moving out next week because they require larger living […]

Property Management: Letting Agent Vs Landlord

Property Management: Letting Agent Vs Landlord

13 Aug 2010 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 7 Comments

Most of you are probably blissfully unaware, but last week I released my very first eBook. It’s called “Death of The Agent“; it’s a detailed guide on how to find tenants without a letting agent. It’s aimed at novice landlords, but suitable for anyone that wants to give me money (It costs £3.99). I didn’t […]

Are You Dealing With Rogue Letting Agents? Get In Touch

Are You Dealing With Rogue Letting Agents? Get In Touch

13 Jan 2010 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 30 Comments

If you’re dealing with rogue letting agents, or have done so in the past, please contact Claer Barrett (claer.barrett@ft.com). Earlier this week Claer left a comment on one of my blog posts (Is Your Letting Agent Holding Deposits Or Failing To Pass On Rent?): Any landlords who want me to investigate rogue lettings agents in […]

Is Your Letting Agent Holding Deposits Or Failing To Pass On Rent?

Is Your Letting Agent Holding Deposits Or Failing To Pass On Rent?

30 Nov 2009 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 82 Comments

Before you get bent out of shape and start raging at your tenant for failing to pass on rent, it’s probably best to make sure your tenant is the actual cock-face that is breaking the chain of making rental payments. Recently a pompous-arse rogue letting agent in Oxfordshire was raided after several dozen landlords and […]

Letting Agent Or Landlord Responsible For Securing Deposit?

Letting Agent Or Landlord Responsible For Securing Deposit?

16 Jul 2009 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 4 Comments

Is it the Landlord’s responsibility to put the security deposit into a Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme, or the Letting Agents? For those Landlords out there that are using Letting Agents, are you certain that your agent has deposited your tenant’s deposit into a legally required tenancy protection scheme? What happens if your agent receives the […]

Make Sure Your Letting Agent Is Regulated By A Redness Scheme

Make Sure Your Letting Agent Is Regulated By A Redness Scheme

06 Jul 2009 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 12 Comments

Being urged to inflict pain upon a letting agent isn’t an unfamiliar feeling to me. My hate has been real, and its been fueled by God awful customer service and snake-oil antics. Sound familiar? Not surprising! It’s unfortunately a common occurrence. Dealing with rogue letting agents can be one of the most frustrating aspects of […]

Stupid Mistakes My Letting Agent Made

Stupid Mistakes My Letting Agent Made

06 Apr 2009 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 12 Comments

Over the last few days I’ve been openly bitching about a letting agent I’ve been dealing with. Here are the posts for a recap: I Just Encountered A Rude Cock-Face Letting Agent Letting Agent Is Trying To Rip Me Off While I’ve already mentioned a few reasons why they did an extremely poor job, I […]

10 Reasons Why You Should Use High-Street Letting Agents

10 Reasons Why You Should Use High-Street Letting Agents

28 Jan 2009 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 6 Comments

A few days ago I posted a list of Reasons Why I Don’t Use Letting Agents to find or manage any of my buy-to-let properties. I expected a mixed bag of responses, which is exactly what I got. I got an interesting response from an Estate Agent called Justin, from over at Petter Barry. He […]

Do I Need To Use A Letting Agent? No.

Do I Need To Use A Letting Agent? No.

26 Jan 2009 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 21 Comments

I’ve just had one of my tenants vacate after 4 years of faithful service. It’s an extremely sad and emotional moment… because now, I’m thrown into the agonising process of finding suitable replacement tenants, which despite popular belief, is a gut-wrenching task. Not only that, but it’s also a brain-numbingly boring process, which is often […]

Letting Agent Isn’t Passing On Rent To Landlord

Letting Agent Isn’t Passing On Rent To Landlord

11 Feb 2008 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 14 Comments

I received an email earlier that virtually got my blood boiling. While reading the email I started to grit my teeth and develop mental images of certain snakes in cheap suits being stoned… I have a property currently let by a local agent over 2 months ago. As far as I am aware the tenant […]

Letting Agents Tenancy Renewal Fees

Letting Agents Tenancy Renewal Fees

12 Jan 2008 / Tips For Using Letting Agents / 167 Comments

What is a Tenancy Renewal Fee? If you’ve used a high-street letting agent to source a tenant, the chances are you’re going to be inflicted with a tenancy renewal fee if you wish to renew the tenancy with the tenant after the fixed term expires (typically, it’s after 12 months). Most letting agents charge landlords […]