What do Fairdeal Properties do?
A summary of our services
We pride ourselves in being a complete start to finish property management company at a fair price.
We specialise in full property management as we feel this is the only way we can provide a service that truly adds value to our clients.
We fully understand that not one size fits all so are very flexible of how much you want to get involved as a landlord, from managing everything yourself, to being totally hands off.
However much you decide to be involved in renting your property we are always here 24 hours a day 7 days a week to help and support you as well as keep you updated with all the current laws and regulations.
Our starting rate is 10% (plus VAT) for full management which can be negotiated only if you are willing to use us for multiple properties. We don’t charge less or more depending on which of our services you use, all our services are available all the time. You can use us as much or as less as you want. We feel it is unfair for you to sign up for example for us to only find a tenant but say after 6 months you have a maintenance issue you can’t manage or the tenant loses their job and you need advice on how to proceed, or even you change your mind and want the property empty as you want to sell it. Situations always change and we will at a time and it will be unfair to charge you more when you need us most.
We want to be your agent for life, even after you stop using our services we are still there for all your property matters. Hence it is up to you to make the most of our services.
Additionally, we only work on a sole agency basis. This means if you have a property to rent out, we will not take it on if you have other agents also engaged in renting the property. We understand that a lot of landlords may feel they are putting all their eggs in one basket by using one sole agent but this was only a disadvantage before the current age of the internet. Due to online portals such as Rightmove & Zoopla, no agent has a “Database of tenants”. Every tenant looks on these portals and are not loyal to any agent, what matters is the property. The product, in this case your property mostly does all the talking and no matter where the tenant is, they will find it as long as the agent you use uses all the main portals and does the marketing right.
Another reason for sole agency only is that we find when you have multiple agents involved it puts you, the client at a very big dis-advantage. With multiagent, the agents are involved in a competition to get someone moved in ASAP, time becomes more of a priority rather than the quality of tenant. The reason being agents don’t get paid until the tenant signs the contract and moves in, so up until then, marketing, vetting, referencing, negotiating is all been done for free. Should after all that another agent find a tenant who happens to put the holding deposit down before the other they don’t get paid for all that work. Estate agents are the only business where a large amount of work is done for free not knowing if they will get paid. Finally with two agents competing you also no longer are sure you comparing apples to apples if you have two similar offers. Each agent will push their tenant to get paid, where if you had the same agent with both offers you would know that any recommendations will not be biased as the agent will truly push for the right tenant for you knowing whichever you pick they will still get paid.
So you have a property and want to rent it:
We will come over and inspect the property for you:
This is a perfect opportunity for us to meet face to face and start creating our long-term relationship.
We will inspect the current condition and see what works, if any can be done to make it more presentable and achieve a higher rent.
Not only small things like new carpet or re-painting, sometimes landlords are about to carry out serious re-novation’s and we prefer to get involved before the works starts to advise on items that will increase the demand and rent for the property, for example If it would be worth adding an additional WC downstairs or removing a wall to make it look more presentable. An open and more presentable space or additional WC can sometimes make a substantial difference.
If you have been living in the property yourself for some time, it is human nature to forget or stop seeing issues in your own home. Things like a lock that doesn’t work, you may have got so used to it that even forgot it was broken, or a crack in a wall, after years it may have just become a part of the decor. Having us come with a fresh pair of eyes will help find and resolve any issues as first impressions are key for any new tenant, and we will want to have the property in the best possible condition for future viewings.
Obviously, any works will depend on a budget, you may have been planning for some time to do some works so will be willing to do a big renovation job. We have great contractors to carry out such tasks. Having been in the industry for nearly 20 years we have become experts at this. Then again you may not have any funds to spare, so we will only do the bare minimum to achieve maximum rent. Whichever position you are in, we will come up with a plan that will fit your current situation. Sometimes we have been to properties where nothing needs to be done and we have saved the landlords £1,000s on works that would have made no difference to how much rent they would have achieved.
We also take this opportunity to discuss what type of tenant you are looking for. You might have a large 5 bedroom house near a tube station for which we might advise to convert into a HMO (House of Multiple Occupation). HMOs don’t work for everyone but if right for you we can help set them up including doing the works needed to meet regulations, apply for the license from the local authority and manage the property once all is up and running. You may have a 1 bedroom flat near the airport, for which a couple with a baby may be suited. We only advise on what will achieve the highest rent and that will be suitable for that particular property and then the final decision is always yours to make.
We will run through the current rules and regulations that apply to renting a property, such as local authority license, gas and electric safety certificate, and answer any questions or concerns you may have about renting.
After the initial inspection: We will give you some time to digest the information we would have provided. We will also, now having seen the property advise you with what the best options will be for you. We will back this up with current market prices and also examples we have already in-house so you can get true picture of the realistic costs and returns you are looking at. Just going on market data is not great as most prices are over hyped due to the nature of marketing and have space for negotiation.
We always tell landlords that it is sometimes better to take a lower rent than have the property empty. A property that rents for £1,000 is better to rent for £950.00 for 12 months than be empty for a month. The loss of one months rent of £1,000 will take 20 months to cover for the extra £50 you are holding out on.
Additionally, we find the higher the rent the shorter the term of the tenancy or the more demands from tenants. Every time a tenant leaves there are expenses due to normal wear and tear, such as painting, cleaning or re-grouting to get the property ready again for another tenant, plus the risk of it being empty for a short period. Hence it is better to take a lower rent and have the tenants stay for a few years rather than have them change every year. Also, if tenants feel they are paying too high a rent, or have little patience should a maintenance issue arise, they feel entitled to a “should have been done yesterday” service. This service comes at a cost to the landlord, and with a tenant paying the market rate they appreciate this and are more patient.
You have decided to use our services: We will now send out our T&Cs for you to sign, request a copy of your passport, and anyone else who will be on the land registry as the legal owner. We will check this on the land registry to ensure we have all the legal owners consent before we can proceed. We also obtain your bank details, usually a bank statement with your name is needed to ensure it is your account and as proof of address for money laundering regulations.
Marketing: This is the most important part of the service, we will have to make sure all, if any renovation works are done and completed. The property must look spotless for when we go in to take photos and shoot a video tour. We do all our photos, videos and floor plans in house, it gives us more control on how we want to market the property and most importantly safes our landlords from unnecessary cost.
We respond to any enquires on the same day, of if sent after 8pm, the next day by 10am. This can be very time consuming, especially when trying to vet the good from the bad, but the more care taken at this stage the better quality of tenant that get through and hopefully result in a successful let.
We have a very modern and advance CRM system, so no enquiry is missed, and every important aspect of a tenant is logged and kept in accordance with data protection laws.
Viewings: We find that the best person to show a home is a person who lives in it. Be it the current tenant or the owner. That way nothing his hidden from the tenant, as if they are meeting a current tenant, the current tenant can be truthful about how it is to live in the property. This goes a long way with tenants as Agents unfortunately are the least trusted people. Same with an owner, it is your home, if anyone can sell it (rent it) it has to be you. You lived in it, its your prized asset, you will mention all the good points and also as you have lived in it, they will get a true picture of how it is to live in the property.
We understand not everyone wants to meet strangers and show them around hence are happy to do the viewings ourselves if required. It also may not be right for the current tenant to do a viewing if the end of the tenancy has been on not such amicable terms, no matter how good a service you provide there will always be people you can’t please. Additionally, the current tenant may be away or working at times when we need the viewings done, or prefers they are done when they are not home. We are very flexible for viewings, as each one is vital, so we do our utmost to accommodate all applicants doing viewings late in the evening and on weekends.
Whoever is doing the viewings you are kept up to date with each one, when they were done and most importantly any feedback we are getting. Feedback is very important as it will show us any short coming or issues we may have. If 8 out of 10 tenants say it is too expensive, this will help us confirm that reducing the price will help. Having data to make a decision is key in all aspects of life.
Offers: Once we receive any offer, we put it forward via email to yourself. Even if the offer is far too low we feel obliged to send this through, again it is a type of feedback so you know what others value your property at. Sometimes it takes 25 viewings with 10 low offers for a landlord to realise that they are asking too much, not the best way to get to this conclusion as you may have lost the chance to rent to any of them, but sometimes it is the only way.
Negotiations: This is where having a good agent makes a big difference, negotiation not only the rent but other aspects is key to finding a successful tenant. We will work hard on this to ensure you get the best offer as possible but being a moral agent we also ensure the tenants are being treated fairly. It is ideal for landlords to provide their lowest price to help us in this process and also what else they are willing to do, maybe provide some furniture, or remove furniture, change the carpet now or maybe in 6 months. There is a endless list of items that can be discussed during this process but we always get to a result that both the landlord and applicant are happy, which is then all confirmed via email to both parties so it is in writing and there are no miss-understandings in the future.
Legality: While referencing the tenants we ensure we have all the legal requirements in place and meet all the regulations for renting in England. We instruct, if not in place, the gas, electric certificates and EPC. Any works that need doing are completed and we ensure and manage this so it is all done in time, ideally a day or two before the tenants move in. We may have to organise furniture so request this is all in place a good few days before the check in date in case the furniture comes damaged, or the wrong item is sent if being delivered. If there are any delays, we keep the tenant informed so they are fully aware and to manage their expectations. If the landlord is unaware or does not have one, we also apply to the local authority for any licenses that may be needed to make sure the tenancy is legally fully compliant.
Contract: Once the reference is completed, we send out the contract to the tenant to sign and obtain the deposit. This is a very robust contract provided by our legal advisors recommended to us by ALRA Property Mark. The contract is fully up to date to ensure all the clauses are water tight and there no illegal clauses to make sure the landlord is not exposed to any undue risk. At the same time we make sure it is fair for tenants and fully includes landlords obligations and tenants. We regularly update this as the laws and regulations around renting are constantly changing. Once signed we counter sign it on behalf of the landlord and send a copy to you to keep for your records.
Check-in: On the day we meet the tenant at the property (insuring we have the first months rent and deposit in our account in full) and give them the keys. Most of our landlords book a professional inventory which we strongly recommend as a full inventory and schedule of condition should be carried out by a professional company that is fully insured for such a service. We can help organise this as well and truly believe it helps with any arguments or disagreements when it comes to the tenant ending their tenancy. Since the rules of having to protect a deposit with a recognised provider came into force, unless the landlord can provide clear and professional inventory it is very difficult to deduct anything from the tenants deposit. The inventory will also included the utility readings for the gas, electric and water meter (if there is one).
The money: The day after the tenants is checked-in we transfer the first month rent taking off our commission for that month and protect the deposit as well as transfer it to our client deposit account.
Our commission is taken monthly, we feel this has many benefits, including the landlord not paying out a large amount on the first month when they may need the funds more than ever, you may have spent a lot of money of getting the property ready or obtaining all the certificates, hence we feel we help by only taking a small amount.
Additionally, taking our commission monthly keeps us involved with the tenants and yourself, having a monthly email sent to you with the rental statement gives an opportunity to provide you with any updates. The most important advantage of taking commission monthly is that you know as a landlord we, the Agent, won’t get paid until the rent comes in, hence our priorities are aligned, we both want the rent in on time every month and even a slight delay results us chasing the rent aggressively putting your mind at ease knowing the rent will always come in and if there is a delay we will be on it. The final advantage, should the tenant not pay, being realistic no matter how good an Agent you are, things happen, we wont charge until the rent comes in. This way you are not out of pocket or should the tenancy come to an end quickly you don’t pay commission for any period the tenants didn’t pay for. This increases our risk as a business but we are confident with the service and the quality of tenant we provide and hence know this risk is very low and are willing to take it. We feel it is unfair for a landlord to pay commission on rent they have not received.
Agent for life:
During the tenancy we will help manage all aspect of day to day letting as well as organise quality and professional contractors for any type of work, this could also be for your own residential home if not only the property we have rented for you. Once you have rented a property through us, as mentioned, using some or all of our services is up to you, even after the tenancy ends, for all your property needs you don’t need to look any further. You can email or call us any time about anything property related, and we will always be there to help and advise you.