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Landlords “must use agents to handle Labour’s reforms” - claim

A prominent property group says landlords can only cope with the upcoming rental reform programme under Labour if they work with “trusted” lettings agents.

Mark Lawrinson of Beresford Property Group, in a statement on how the property industry should welcome the Starmer government, says: “Labour wants to see a private rented sector that provides decent, safe and secure homes at a price people can afford. It is therefore essential for landlords to work with trusted agents to ensure they are aware of their right and responsibilities.”

He says there are opportunities for landlords: “The rental market remains robust, offering significant opportunities for Landlords. Labour's focus on tenant rights and rental market regulation is expected to create a balanced environment, ensuring fair play for both landlords and tenants, which is likely to sustain high demand for rental properties.

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“High demand for rental properties is expected to persist, driven by Labour's commitment to improving rental conditions and increasing the supply of affordable rental homes. This ensures that rental yields will remain attractive, making it an excellent time for landlords to expand their portfolios.”

Beresford says the housing crisis is well known to be one of the country’s biggest barriers to growth but Labour’s commitment to ‘get Britain building again’ has laid out plans to build 1.5m new homes over the next parliament; the government plans a more strategic approach to green belt land, prioritising brown and grey belt land for development, with more affordable housing and public service provision.

Lawrinson says: “Developers are in a strong position as the demand for new homes continues to grow. Labour's housing policies, including plans to streamline planning processes, are expected to boost the new homes sector significantly.

With Labour's commitment to affordable housing and increased support for first-time buyers, the party manifesto has promised a permanent, comprehensive mortgage guarantee scheme to support first-time buyers who struggle to save for a large deposit, with lower mortgage costs. The market is expected to benefit from a number of new policies aimed at making home ownership more accessible. Policies including the proposed ‘Freedom to Buy’ scheme and maintained stamp duty reforms make it an opportune moment to enter the property market.”  

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    • 09 July 2024 00:29 AM

    "Trusted" Letting agents - an oxymoron if ever I saw one!

    George Dawes

    So very very true !!!

     
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    Trusted 😂😂😂, no such beast.

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    That's what Starmer wants? no he wants us all bankrupt

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    Andrew

    I don't often disagree you but I really think Starmer would rather have small prs landlords than the big corporate build to rent companies favoured by the Tories.

    Obviously he would rather have only owner occupiers and social housing providers but I think he has enough common sense to realise that some other rental option is essential.

    After all, Gordon Brown flirted with giving private landlords the same rax treatment as commercial landlords until he realised how much the Exchequer would lose, so previous Labour Governments have not been too hostile to prs landlords.

    Osborne and Gove have done us the most harm ever.

     
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    Letting Agents, like LLs, can be good or bad. There is no requirement for any qualifications so I fail to see how this guarantees anything other than a rent rise for all tenants!

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    It isn’t “an excellent time for landlords to expand their portfolios”. Safer and less hassle to buy property abroad.

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    "It is therefore essential for landlords to work with trusted agents to ensure they are aware of their right and responsibilities." Err...no it isn't. There are some agents who can't be trusted to do things properly. Also there are some hopeless landlords out there, who do need some help, you can find them on social media asking for help once things have gone horribly wrong.

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    I used a trusted agent for three years…. They left a new mum tenant with no heating for two months and let another tenant run up 6 months of rent arrears. They were “leaders” in their field!!!! I went back to self managing.

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    Were they also from Rome?

    The word everyone is attacking is trusted. As an independent agent as well as a landlord, I would hope that our clients trust us to handle their properties as I do my own. If you don’t trust your agent, don’t use them. 😉

    As for not qualified, neither are most landlords, Tricia. 😀

     
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    I haven't had trustworthy agents. 2 of the largest in the country.

    I had endless problems with my agent who claimed to be all heart, but didn't have one! They took a holding deposit on a card, including some pence and didn't account for it. Then took the rest for the first month's rent. This meant the rent charged wasn't in 12 equal payments and in contravention on the tenant fee ban. I got cryptic schedules from the agent from their accounts department with vauge descriptions like 'moving in moneys' etc but not saying exactly what it was. They couldn't wouldn't explain it or find out. Wouldn't refund the money blocking me ussuing a S21. Deliberate??? In the end I got my solicitor to do it as I had the tenants bank details. The agent refused.

    Also didn't fill out the deposit paperwork properly. Missed the section to include the clause where deductions are made. I studied some law and my solicitor told me it was defective. I had to tell my useless agent about 3 times to reissue it before they finally backed down.

    After a S21 I needed a new gas inspection. Told them 1 month before to do it. 2 weeks before checked. In the ends you are calling and emailing every day dealing with people with names like 'Hailey' who tells you 'yeah, don't worry Dave (the plumber) always gets in'. She isn't the one who will have to explain why a gas cert was done late. They also tell you they can break in with their key. Well after the bailiffs I asked for it back. I just wanted to see they still had it. They didn't.

    These property managers over charge for building works by a lot. I needed a new kitchen roof and painting. Got quoted something like £14k. I got it done myself for about £4k. You may as well just get your own builders instead of chasing these agents. They just take their fee every month. Dont want to do anything.

    In my job I now deal with property managers. I find all of them to be incompetent and lazy. They are just post boxes. A problem lands in their inbox and they fire it off somewhere else.

    I know people say use an independent. I would potentiall try it. So long as I can give notice without these 4 months RENT fee some of these people want to charge for termination. It's essential the termination of the agent is very easy!

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    That is the problem with corporate agents. Independent are more likely to hold PRS, PII, CMP etc. It is that time of year for our renewals and you would not believe the hoops we have to jump through.😠

     
    Richard LeFrak

    I had a similar experience with a national agent who are based country wide. I gave them all my portfolio at that time of 8 properties. 4 of them had rent all over the place and one was missing for 6 months.

    The manager was an ale can who could not bothered to return calls, it was only when I threatened them with solicitor's letters that they got their act together. For nearly a year I was getting payments from them where they had missed and had to send through, audit department was equally as useless.

    The one I use now is also a national chain but the owner driver of the franchise has looked after me for over ten years with zero drama.

     
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    If I can't do the repair work myself I do arrange the contractor myself

     
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    Those with vested interests, particularly agents, overstate the complexity of it all. It's not rocket science. One could teach a complete novice in a couple of hours what their responsibilities and necessary paperwork, and that includes a coffee break!

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    Bit like being a landlord then.

     
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    Martin: there are in excess of 140 individual pieces of legislation that impact the PRS and private landlords. That is no simple matter, and one of the central reasons I don’t use agents because they can’t cope in my experience.
    You have to be pay ‘forensic attention to management’ to avoid being caught out these days. The PRS has become the definitive example of ‘over regulation’

     
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    Me thinks! a lot of self interest for the author in this article.

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    Martin. That goes to prove what you know about the Regulations / zero.
    First of all you need a degree in Computerisation. I could teach a novice all they need to know in half an hour as well, exit. There’s a big difference between knowing, doing and dealing with all the Compliances, that’s all we need someone to trivialised the nightmares we suffer..
    Get a job with the Local Authority, Shelter or Generation Rent they know it all too but don’t supply the property.
    I never had an interest only loan it was always commercial repayment loans base rate + 3% usually 8% now all the smart Alex’s tell us how easy everything is. There was never a situation where a house paid for itself it took my money earned from outside the business to meet the repayment, otherwise it would take the income from 2 house to pay for one, try teaching them that.

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    I wouldn’t let an agent anywhere near my portfolio. I’ve tried 3 and each one proved wholly incompetent. At best they’re only good for tenant finding.

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    ALL Letting Agents should have to be qualified. At the moment it's like the wild west.

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    Going down that road leads to landlords must use an agent or be qualified. That qualification will cost, of course. 😉

     
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    These agents are presumably the same ones who reserve maintenance work for their "trusted" contractors, who are forced to over-price by at least 10% and the extra goes quietly into the agent's pocket. So not only are landlords paying fees, forced to pay for a new AST every 6 months, and often receive falsified inspection and maintenance reports (the handle that was never broken and never repaired, the door that never needed "adjusting", etc), they are also paying inflated prices on every tradesperson that gies through their door.

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