Buy To Let

How to Get the Best Rent

You have to decide the rent at which you or your agents are going to advertise the property for rent. In the Barbican, the obvious thing to do is to consult the best local agents and ask them what figure they would suggest. That is all part of the process of selecting the best agent to instruct.

You should stick to agents who have a regular letting business in the Barbican, so they have plenty of experience, can give you examples of rents achieved recently in similar properties, and will also be high on the list of firms being approached by tenants specifically wanting to find flats to rent in the Barbican. Tenants like that are more likely to pay slightly more, because they are specifically looking to rent in the Barbican, not just any flat in the postal area generally.

That way, you are taking advantage of shortage of supply. Agents outside the Barbican will be offering applicants all kinds of propearties from the Tower Hamlets downwards, so their applicant will be particularly bothered about whether it’s the Barbican or not.

Another advantage of using experienced local agent is that they can answer all the questions. You know yourself the Barbican is a slightly different place, and when the prospective tenant with various laptops and mobile devices is appalled by the lack of available plugs sockets, you want your agent to be ready with suggestions and reassurance that it is the nature of the estate as a whole, not the appalling layout of your flat.

See the other tab for the letting agents I recommend.

151212_ANDREWES WITH BASE PORTRAIT SIDEBARS 6

Use these Letting Agents

You need a good letting agent

The main issue is achieving a good letting. For that you clearly need to use a good letting agent, who actually knows the local rents and has a supply of applicants. You should always use an estate agent who is a local Barbican specialist.

These are the estate agents I recommend. Click their names to go to their individual pages and learn more about them. (I am showing them in alphabetical order, not in any order of preference – they are all good.)

Frank Harris
Hamilton Brooks
Scott City

If you have a letting agent, that’s going to cost you a good month’s rent in letting fees, but the benefit of getting the best rent, and being able to choose from a good range of applicants who are ready when you need them to be, is worth that. If you end up messing about waiting to make your letting, you’re losing money. If you get the wrong tenant, you risk bringing down a world of world on your self.

What you pay your letting agent

The letting agent will charge you a fee based on the rent, typically a percentage of the annual rent. A lower rate is often on the assumption that you will arrange for rent payments to be made direct to your account during the letting and you will deal with management issues.

Typical charges would be:

  • 10% of the annual rent for achieving a letting,
  • 12½ % if the agency collects the rent to as well as arranging the letting
  • 15% if you want them to actually manage the property and field complaints and problems as well as arranging the letting and collecting the rent.

You should bear in mind that many estate agents charge a further fee if your tenant (found through them) signs up a new agreement at the end of the current letting period. You want to check whether that is one of their terms.

Letting agents’ terms and conditions

The letting agent will either have printed terms they ask you to confirm in writing you accept, or they will ask you to sign a specific management agreement. You should read the document carefully to find out exactly what services are provided, what percentage of rent you will be paying and whether, for example, there’s a renewal fee.

You should not sign up for a long-term management contract. You should be able to cancel the contract on reasonable notice. Then the agency knows that it has to provide you with a good service in order to keep you as a client.

You will be planning to deduct all expenses from your rental income, and only pay tax on what is pure income. So you should make sure your agents will provide you with a statement of income and expenditure which you can use for your tax return each year.

140423_TOWER