There is no getting away from the fact that the last month has been a tough one when it comes to the public perception of letting agents.
The private rental industry, as with many others out there, has become accustomed to dealing with complaints from aggrieved tenants and homeless charities. But the recent influx of criticism has come from much closer to home, with many agents recognising the need to ensure that their performance becomes a differentiator from the ‘rest’ of the field.
The Foxtons case, centring around claims of ‘unfair fees’ has made the national press and has been given support by renowned property law guru Tessa Shepperson, as have stories about Ocean Finance’s assertion that some letting agents charge ‘rip-off fees’.
Then there was the piece written for The Daily Telegraph by the renowned landlord and journalist Liz Hodgkinson, again criticising agents’ fees and building upon a viewpoint already expressed in the Evening Standard by fellow landlord and journalist Victoria Whitlock.
This level of criticism has shaken many agents but many more are now looking for ways in which to rise above the negative opinion and demonstrate to ‘their’ public how much value-for-money they truly offer.
One of the ways in which agents can do this is by employing the latest technology to ensure that the services on offer to both landlords and tenants are the best they can be.
Solutions such as InventoryBase property inspection software, for example, can fulfil the requirement of delivering first-class service, whilst streamlining processes to address the practical and economic requirements of letting agents themselves.
In a climate in which even those working closely with letting agents have voiced concerns about the performance of some, this is certainly not a time for agents who want to ensure success to simply wait for the storm to pass.
Whilst the vast majority of letting agents are already providing an excellent service to many, many satisfied landlords and tenants, the effect of the recent publicity on public opinion cannot be ignored.
The good news is that offering a service so good it leaves no room for criticism prompts far-reaching recommendations that can take a letting business forwards through even the most turbulent of tides. And it is not that hard or expensive to achieve.
Why not contact the experts at InventoryBase today to ensure that your agency or lettings business is ready to actively counter the effects of recent negative press.