Letting agents advised to prepare for a rental surge

Letting agents advised to prepare for a rental surge

According to payment management solution, PayProp, UK letting agents need to prepare for a rise in the number of tenants entering the Private Rented Sector.

The company suggest that agents who use technology to streamline and automate their processes can dedicate more time to clients and scale more effectively, among other key benefits.

The PropTech firm believes that the recent Multihousing Report, released in June by Knight Frank, shows just how quickly the PRS is growing.

According to Knight Frank, the proportion of households renting privately will rise to 24% by 2021 with 68% of 10,000 tenants surveyed for the study said they expect to be renting in three years' time.

Knight Frank's findings tally with the trajectory set out by the most recent English Housing Survey (EHS).

The EHS for 2015-16 placed the proportion of households privately renting at 20%, equivalent to around four million households.

Meanwhile, the rate of owner occupation in England has fallen from a peak of 71% in 2003 to 63% last year.

Neil Cobbold, PayProp's chief operating officer in the UK, had this to say: "It's clear to us that the PRS is set to experience more growth over the next few years and those letting agents who prepare for a time when there are more landlords and tenants are likely to be the most successful"


Prepare for growth with PropTech

Cobbold says PropTech offers several key benefits to agents preparing for and managing growth: "A key advantage of incorporating efficient tech solutions is improved communication. With more tenancies, communications need to be improved and people are looking at apps and electronic forms to achieve this."

Cobbold says that Fixflo – which announced a partnership with PayProp recently – is an excellent example of a PropTech solution which has improved communication, as it allows tenants to report maintenance problems 24/7.

He continued: "Streamlining and automation is also useful for arrears management. Another underplayed benefit of PropTech is control.
It’s far easier to monitor and record access and activity on a PropTech system than relying on staff’s diligence in maintaining a paper trail."

Service above all

Cobbold says that above all, streamlining and automating processes is a great way for agents to grow while offering higher levels of customer service.

"Most agents started out because of their passion for helping tenants and landlords and providing a good service, but this might end up being a difficult promise to keep as you scale." he said, adding "One reason consumers like to use independent agents is due to the level of service they offer. Corporate agencies can sometimes be more difficult to get hold of and clients like to be able to interact directly with their agent."

PropTech won’t take away that human interaction from small companies, and it will also give bigger companies a chance to reintroduce the human touch."

Cobbold concludes: "By streamlining all the other steps, you’ll free up the time to provide that warm, caring service.”

PayProp effectively launched in the UK in 2015 and has experienced rapid growth in the interim, partnering with a number of high-profile agencies as well as industry trade body ARLA Propertymark.

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IrisJ.
IrisJ. 19 Jul 2017

Great advice, but may I also add that when buying an already built home, make sure you do all of the proper inspections. Most importantly pest inspection because people tend to get surprised when they

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IrisJ.
IrisJ. 17 Jul 2017

The third point is, in my opinion, the most important one. People have become too inconsiderate and careless when it comes to rented properties. If a landlord wants to protect their property, regular visits...

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cornishalan
cornishalan 10 Jul 2017

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Jo Mullett
Jo Mullett 07 Jul 2017

Here in Swansea, known as the Japanese knotweed capital of the UK, it never fails to amazes me that people have no idea of the potential problems this invasive non-native plant can cause when buying or...

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NathanG
NathanG 05 Jul 2017

McDonalds, for example, have been purchasing their real estate on prime locations for years. If something happens to the company they'll have invaluable assets that will be able to save them. We might

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Jonah
Jonah 04 Jul 2017

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Dianne Griffen
Dianne Griffen 29 Jun 2017

Be very wary of anyone bringing you deals that they have ?found? and want to ?sell on to you? or ?joint venture? with you on ? you need a proper legal contract for this, involve a RICs surveyor to confirm...

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jason hadzikostas
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SecomTech
SecomTech 22 Jun 2017

AT Last...This was discussed years ago and there was a move towards landlords registering their bad tenants on a database..(can't remember where) It seems a logical step though our leaders will probably...

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Bertrand
Bertrand 02 Jun 2017

How about the Welsh Govt introducing a scheme to protect landlords against "rogue" tenants who are then taken to court for criminal damage to the properties they trash. Pretty unlikely I suspect and politically...

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AmberMorris
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"Please don't pick a novelty tune-playing doorbell. They're not 'fun'. They're stupid." Laughed a lot to this. It's actually true, though.

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Oliver Conway
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Making a neat inventory is a good idea, but if the seller is not willing to provide it, can the buyer demand it?

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