The Property Industry Eye reported of a court case last month which highlighted how things can go very wrong when references are not undertaken properly or even worse ignored completely! We know that a landlord needs to trust that their agent is undertaking thorough referencing so that they can make an informed decision when allowing a stranger to rent their property. It is disappointing to read that some agents are not doing their due diligence in this regard.
As a local independent agent, we pride ourselves on our solid reputation as a professional agent that landlords can trust and as such we ensure that referencing is never a step taken lightly. At Moores we have always had (and will continue to always have) a very thorough referencing system. This is paramount when trying to ensure a landlord is receiving a quality tenant from us. Not only is it our duty to find a suitable tenant but it is also our duty to be fully transparent with our landlord at times when we may have concerns with a potential tenant. I can whole heartedly say that no amount of commission is worth allowing a bad tenant to move into a property.
Our full independent referencing procedure covers the following:
Credit Check – this will highlight if a proposed tenant has ever had any financial problems and will also confirm any outstanding or previous CCJs.
Landlord Reference – probably the most important check of all. If a previous landlord gives a negative reference then an alarm bell is immediately sounding to our team.
Employment Reference – key to knowing that the proposed tenant is who they say they are, that they are in permanent work and their salary is as stated so we are comfortable with them being able to afford the rent.
Right To Rent Check – now compulsory this check is key to ensuring the proposed tenant has the right to reside in the UK. I know that many landlords may still skip this step (which could lead them to a hefty fine) but it is crucial. Moores have actually encountered a fraudulent passport in the last 12 months so it shows that people are out there trying to cheat the system.
Once our referencing company has completed all the checks they will award our landlord with a 6 month rent guarantee policy, which we include free of charge to our landlords. Our management clients can extend this cover to 12 months to give them additional peace of mind that they will receive their rental income.
Unfortunately, on occasion things can still go wrong even when full references have been undertaken. However, a landlord should be able to trust that their agent has done all they can do eliminate any potential risk. My advice to landlords is to never skip the referencing process for any reason – even if renting to family & friends. Your rental property is an important financial asset and you do not want to risk letting it to the wrong person – or have it managed by the wrong agent. The case in the press also highlighted how the agent was managing the tenancy from 70 miles away which only further aggravated the situation. Our experience has shown us that local knowledge is key. Communication between landlord and client is essential and choosing the right agent is the most important decision a landlord will make.
Any landlords reading this who do not use Moores should give me a call if they wish to discuss their property with me. I am always happy to give advice and show you how our Full Management Service has all the elements needed to ensure you are a landlord that is valued and protected.
Email [email protected] or phone 0113 2742033