Why and How to Choose Your Manchester Letting Agents

Why do you need to choose Manchester letting agents?

Here are a few questions to ask yourself if you are considering choosing one of the many Manchester letting agents to work with on your rental properties.

Do you have a job or another business that takes up much of your time?

Do you find property management causes you stress?

Do you live far from your investment property in Manchester?

Do you worry about finding the right tenant?

Do you have concerns about how you resolve maintenance issues?

If you answered YES to three of these questions then you need to choose from one of the many Manchester letting agents to help you with your rental property.

When you have a rental property there are many things to consider and if you don’t have the time, or don’t want the stress then a letting agent can do all the hard work for you.

How to choose your Manchester Letting Agent
How to choose your Manchester Letting Agent

How to choose your Manchester letting agent?

Manchester letting agents: The Geographical Market

There are 342 agents when you search via Rightmove, check out Rightmove’s list of Manchester letting agents here. So the most important thing is to of course choose a letting agent that covers your area.

If your property is in the city centre of Manchester, they you need a city centre agent, of which there are 131, here is the list on Rightmove of city centre Manchester letting agents specifically.

Within the city centre there are certain pockets of areas too. So if you have a Northern Quarter flat you may like an agent based in that area, the same for Spinningfields.

There are many city centre agents located on Deansgate, with their rather smart offices and huge portfolios. You often see their snazzy little cars bussing about town too.

Are you an Investor or are you simply renting out one property?

Choosing the right Manchester letting agent
Choosing the right Manchester letting agent

For the rest of Manchester, or Greater Manchester shall we call it, we can divide the areas up into South, North, West and East, with the city centre being in the middle. Many agents, including ourselves will cover the whole of the outer areas of the city.

As we are investors ourselves, we understand portfolio landlords who have properties in multiple areas so our processes are set up to be able to manage properties all over the city.

With the benefit of the M60 we can nip around to all areas within 30 minutes maximum. If you are an established landlord or you are building a property business then you want an agent who can look after your portfolio and is therefore set up to cover multiple areas.

For example, there are parts of Manchester such as Denton, Droylsden and Hyde all within Tameside, Greater Manchester. There are agents on the high streets of those towns but you want an agent who can work across those areas and further afield  to Salford and North Manchester. There are great investment opportunities across Manchester, with one letting agent on board your property business will run much smoother.

You can read my recent blogs on the best area in Manchester for buy to let. I share with you why Manchester as a region is brilliant for investment as well as looking at specific areas such as Oldham and Tameside.

If you are a one off landlord, perhaps moving out from your own home and renting it out, then you may want to use a local agent, that is close to your home and the area that you know.

As I am an investor I understand the huge importance of minimising voids, of collecting rent on time, the importance of seeing to maintenance in a timely way so as not to incur further costs. I strongly believe only a fellow investor will understand your world!

Conclusion: Choose an agent that fits in with your business. Are you an Investor? Choose an agent that invests too and can cover multiple areas. Are you renting out your home while you move to another, with no plans for a property business? Then you may want to choose a reputable local agent.

Manchester letting agents: Different Service Levels

Before you make contact with potential agents you should consider the service level that you want from an agent. Typically it is structured in a Let Only or Fully Managed way. You can take a look at our Plans and Pricing page to get a feel for our specific service levels.

Ask yourself the questions above again with the different options in mind, you will soon know if you want to take a fully managed service or not.

Think about how important your free time is to you. Would you mind receiving calls from your tenant on a Sunday or would you prefer not to have that hassle and stress. We take calls 24/7 from our tenants so landlords of ours do not need to be disturbed at the weekends or evenings. We just email our landlords any updates or give them a tinkle to update them.

Conclusion: Choose the service level from your Manchester letting agent based on the amount of time you have (or WANT!) to be involved with your rental property.

Manchester letting agents: Finding the Right One

So there are 342 Manchester letting agents, how on earth do you choose the right one for you?

I would start by having a look to see what agents are active in the area that your properties are located in, use Rightmove to do this by entering your postcode into the search function and seeing the list Rightmove brings you of properties available and therefore Manchester letting agents operating in your area.

Searching for Manchester Letting Agents
Searching for Manchester Letting Agents

Make a note of their names and go and check our their websites. All professional Manchester letting agencies should have a good website that provides you with a good insight into their business.

Then call a few of them, enquire about the rental prices in the area and how buoyant the market is. That way you will get a feel for how professional they are, how was the phone answered, how was the call handled?

From this excersise you may then have a shortlist of agents who impressed you on the phone. Now I would suggest, calling them and advising you are looking to appoint an agent.

Here are some questions to ask, if you can speak to a Director, or the business owner that would be best. You should already have quite a bit of info on the service these Manchester letting agents provide from their website, so now you want to dig a bit deeper into how these particular letting agents in Manchester work.

What is your tenant screening process?

What timescales do you work to for finding a tenant?

What will you do for me if my tenant stops paying rent?

Who deals with your maintenance? What happens when there is an emergency?

How does your rent collection system work? When do I get paid?

By asking these questions of the agents you have in mind you can understand their systems and they will work for you.

Conclusion: Get a short list of Manchester letting agents that interest you, meet or speak with them to answer these keys questions about how they will take your stress away, reduce the time you have to spend on your property and keep more money in your pocket.

Summary

Choose from the many Manchester letting agents depending on your situation and location. Choose from a shortlist by asking some key questions of the agent and ensuring their answers meet your satisfaction.

There are MANY things that can happen when you put a tenant in a property. You need to have the right paperwork in place, you need to know about all your legal requirements and responsibilities, you need to manage that tenancy successfully so everything goes smoothly and you need to be able to sort maintenance issues out promptly when they arise.

It will require your time, effort and energy and if you don’t have an abundance of those things and/or the knowledge then choosing from one of the Manchester letting agents may just be one of the best decisions you make as a property investor!

This article has been written by  Charlotte Puddy, Landlord and Director of Abode. Charlotte has self managed properties and used her own and other Manchester letting agents to manage her portfolio. If you would like to talk to Charlotte about choosing the right letting agent, wherever you may be in the country, you can contact her by emailing charlotte@abodeltd.co.uk or filling in the form on our website here.

Update: All letting agents to be registered with a Property Redress Scheme by 1st October

Make sure any agent you choose can confirm they too are members of one of the above schemes.

The government has stated that all property agents must be registered with a redress scheme by 1st October 2014.  The three schemes are The Property Ombudsman, Ombudsman Services: Property and the Property Redress Scheme.

I AM DELIGHTED TO CONFIRM THAT ABODE IS A MEMBER OF THE PROPERTY OMBUDSMAN (AND HAS BEEN INCEPTION)

WE ADHERE TO ALL ASPECTS OF IT’S CODE OF CONDUCT

Brandon Lewis commented:

“Most tenants and landlords are happy with the service they get from their letting agent, but in the small number of cases where people have complaints these should be addressed quickly and effectively.

“That’s why from October 1, letting agents will need to belong to one of three approved redress schemes. This will mean that anyone who feels they are not being treated fairly will have somewhere to go with their concerns – and could receive compensation.

“I’m pleased to see that already the vast majority of letting agents have signed up – but I would urge those who haven’t done so yet to follow suit.”

Christopher Hamer, The Property Ombudsman, added:

“I welcome the announcement from the Government about this requirement for letting agents to register with a redress scheme.

“The lettings sector has been aware for some time that this was coming and we now have certainty about the date of implementation.

“The announcement does not mention anything about a period of grace for completing that registration, so agents operating in England (the obligations do not yet apply to Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland) should deal with the matter with all haste.

“TPO has seen an increase in membership applications in recent weeks so it is encouraging to see that many firms have already reacted and are keen to show that they want to follow the standards in the TPO Code of Practice.”

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