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Choosing a Letting Agent



Choosing the wrong letting agent could cost you thousands of pounds. Although letting residential property in the UK is subject to complex legislation, many people will be surprised to know that there is currently no formal regulation of letting agents.


This means that anybody can set up as a letting agent at anytime with no knowledge of the law, no experience of how to let properties safely and legitimately: and no understanding of the lettings market in which they operate.


With the property sales market at a virtual standstill many people are turning to letting and renting instead and in the current economic climate they are naturally keen to keep their costs down.


However, when it comes to letting, you get what you pay for and what appears to be a genuine saving on a low fee can end up costing you significantly more and in the end can cause considerable stress in the process.


We want the public to be careful when choosing their letting agent, particularly as so many new ones have sprung up in recent months, offering heavily discounted fees to attract business.


Although it is important to be cost conscious, you should never choose your letting agent based on their fees alone. We have lost count of the number of landlords who have come to us with their fingers seriously burnt from dealing with agents that simply don't know what they are doing.


From valuing the property and setting up the tenancy accurately, to serving the correct notices in the right way and ensuring a smooth hand over at the end - every element of the process is crucial and getting it wrong can have terrible consequences; including huge legal expenses, loss of rent, long void periods, loss of tenants deposits and serious penalties for not complying with legislation. For the tenants it can literally be a matter of life and death if the legislation regarding the safety of the property and its contents is not complied with.


We want the public to be aware of the importance of using an experienced. independent and well established letting agent, that way you can be sure you are dealing with someone who has a thorough understanding of the complex legislation surrounding letting; an in-depth knowledge of the local letting market and the ability to look after the needs of a range of clients efficiently and professionally.


Choosing an agent for their low fee, or because they value your property higher than another agent, is a mistake we have seen too many people make. We have seen landlords lose thousands of pounds in rent because they have not been able to let their property at the rent suggested by their agent; some have let their property to unreliable tenants who have not been properly referenced and some have been unable to gain possession of their property because their agent failed to set up the tenancy properly or did not issue the correct notices. In the end, any saving they may have made on the agent's fee simply paled into insignificance.


But it's not all doom and gloom. By choosing an experienced lettings specialist, landlords and tenants can have piece of mind and be confident that they are getting the best from their investment or rented home. The lettings market is currently very buoyant, with strong demand for rental property of all types 'from small studio flats to large family homes.


David Harris & Company have specialised in residential lettings since 1989 and are widely regarded as one of Finchley's leading and most successful independent letting agents. We are renowned for our professionalism, integrity and wealth of knowledge. We are a company that you can trust and rely on. We are also proud to be licensed members of the National Association of Estate Agents and the T.P.O (The Property Ombudsman) scheme for Estate Agents. We hold substantial Professional Identity insurance and are members of a client money protection insurance scheme.


For more detailed information on the service we can provide please refer to the "lettings section" on our website or alternatively please call us on 020 8346 9122.

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