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View Full Version : Anyone taken on a tenant direct that they got through an agent?



norrahe
19th November 2012, 20:54
Tenant has just contacted me directly to see if they can renew direct.

Ill need to look at my contract, but not sure if this might be a no go area.

Agent has been crap and I've ended up having to sort out plumbers etc... myself.

Is anyone renting out property direct? Any sites that they could recommend looking at?

barrydidit
19th November 2012, 21:36
I have. Not sure what restrictions there might be in your agreement with the agency, but I just tend to use them to stick some pictures on Rightmove, show people round and for credit referencing. I organise my own plumbers etc anyway.

Having had to go to the trouble of evicting people I know the agreement is barely worth the paper it's written on. If you've got someone in there who is decent, grab one of those lawpack thingies from the newsagents to add a veneer of officialness and hope for the best. You can always tell the agent you've let it to a friend to get them off your back. Except if they're holding the tenants deposit on your behalf, that might need a bit more thought.

Is the intention to save on the agencies renewal 'admin' fees? I presume both landlord and tenant are liable to cop for these - they're getting a lot greedier than when I first started.

Slumdog
19th November 2012, 22:02
Just in the process of doing this myself. Tenant and I both agree that agent was tulip. However contract was ending with the tenants and agent, so spoke with agents and not been a problem (although they did try to reduce their commission and keep me on their books)

join tenancy deposit scheme, get yourself an assured tenancy contract, do inventory check, setup direct payment and you should be good to go.

doodab
19th November 2012, 22:05
Agents usually charge either a one off fee for finding a tenant or a %age for managing the property. If they aren't actually managing it then tell them you don't want them managing it and diy. It's a lot of arse ache when you get them phoning up at all hours of the day and night cos the bog is blocked though.

norrahe
19th November 2012, 22:13
I hope that I don't get hit with admin fees on contract renewal, I'm paying these feckers for nowt.

Tenants seem ok, it will be a pain to do inventory as I live abroad, but if it saves me £1500 a year in fees.

Just need to check contract t&cs

TykeMerc
20th November 2012, 03:17
I'd be inclined to write a formal complaint letter to them and say you're removing your property from their books.

Make sure that you point out the deficiencies in their service that prompted your decision and send it registered post.

If they try to claim some kind of fee call their bluff and tell them to take it to court, if they've not been supplying a service that's up to standard and you've documented the failures then a judge in chambers will have something to go on.

Old Hack
20th November 2012, 08:53
I am not too sure where you rent, but I believe you would have paid an introduction fee, or management fee. Either way, I believe after the initial period, there's no contract between the two of you anymore, nor rights on the agency.

As it happen we had a tenant in through an agency, then they asked to go through us direct, and have been with us for the past 3 years (although I've just served notice). One thing I would advise, is to ensure you keep their deposit in the proper deposit place, as if they did piss you about, if you hold their deposit direct, they can piss you about a bit more and not be penalised through it e.g. if they stopped paying rent, I would have to go around the houses to get them out, but if they hold theit deposit in the scheme, it's easier.

Something like that anyway.

As an aside, one of our tenants called an electrician to change a light bulb once, then tried to charge me the £45; anyone any other interesting tenant stories?

Support Monkey
20th November 2012, 09:35
What happens when their Boiler packs in at 15:00 christmas eve, where as it was the agents problem is that now your problem.

My mate rented a house to some people direct, appeared to be a nice family, then they stopped paying the rent, then he found out they had been evicted before, then he discovered they had removed the doors from the upstairs cupboards and had used them to make a ferret hutch in the garden, anyway 2 and a half years later he managed to get them evicted again, the house was a shell

Scoobos
20th November 2012, 09:42
I've rented in the south east for a few years now and have been surprised that everyone uses agents.

They are costly for both parties and in every house (4 now) I've lived in, the agent doesn't manage the property either - its down to the landlord.

norrahe
20th November 2012, 09:47
I'm lucky that I have direct contact with a good plumber and electrician, so that when things go wrong I can drop them an e-mail and they will liaise with the tenant.

Old Hack
20th November 2012, 09:50
What happens when their Boiler packs in at 15:00 christmas eve, where as it was the agents problem is that now your problem.

My mate rented a house to some people direct, appeared to be a nice family, then they stopped paying the rent, then he found out they had been evicted before, then he discovered they had removed the doors from the upstairs cupboards and had used them to make a ferret hutch in the garden, anyway 2 and a half years later he managed to get them evicted again, the house was a shell

I'd never encourage anyone to do it direct from the get go; at least if you use an agent from the start, you can guage what kind of people they are. I am very wary of this precise scenario to be frank.

Fandango
20th November 2012, 11:34
do you not just get something like homecare with someone like eon for ~£21/month which covers cenrtal heating, water & electrics 24/7 inc parts & labour? just give the tenant that number

That's what i'm planning to do when we rent ours out after xmas

Old Hack
20th November 2012, 12:02
do you not just get something like homecare with someone like eon for ~£21/month which covers cenrtal heating, water & electrics 24/7 inc parts & labour? just give the tenant that number

That's what i'm planning to do when we rent ours out after xmas

We have landlord insurance which pretty much covers everything they could do, and loss of rental, including rebuilding it if they really went to town! Costs about £24 a month through Halifax

Support Monkey
20th November 2012, 12:09
I think it depends how you feel about it, if your happy to deal with your tenants then just make sure your well insured if you don't want to be involved at all and don't want the hassle then just pay your money and get the agent to deal with it

Old Hack
20th November 2012, 12:13
I think it depends how you feel about it, if your happy to deal with your tenants then just make sure your well insured if you don't want to be involved at all and don't want the hassle then just pay your money and get the agent to deal with it

I think after 6-12 months with a tenant, you get a feel for them being the types to give you troubles. I have one who is a real green type; he doesn't mow the lawns, leaves them overgrown and on my last visit, I noticed he'd dug a fire pit in the middle of the back garden. I don't really care, as long the house looks nice, the front garden looks nice. Outside of that, I have made it clear to him, that when he leaves, he'll have to rectify the hole, and make the garden good.

I have spoken with him, in 4 years, maybe 6 times, and 3 of those were lately when he was discussing a price for the house in case he wanted to buy it. Honestly, if you are new to this, simply get them on an agents books for a while, then soon after, you'll know if they are fussy (call agent every 5 minutes), bad payers, dirty (neighbours will complain), noisey (ditto) or just good folk who need to rent a house. People can act, but they can rarely hold it together for 12 months, so it all comes out in the wash eventually.

Fandango
20th November 2012, 12:15
We have landlord insurance which pretty much covers everything they could do, and loss of rental, including rebuilding it if they really went to town! Costs about £24 a month through Halifax

So does that insurance also cover things like boiler cover etc as well? or do you take out seperate cover for that? I would have thought if its an insurance policy and you need to put in a claim for the boiler as a bit died on it then that's going to knacker your no claims etc come the subsequent year when you need to renew and obviously a boiler breakdown is a lot more likely to happen than someone trashing the property (hopefully!?!)

northernladuk
20th November 2012, 12:20
As an aside, one of our tenants called an electrician to change a light bulb once, then tried to charge me the £45; anyone any other interesting tenant stories?

Same. Have had a quote for £75 for three. I wouldn't mind but it was 3 bulbs in a 12 bulb chandalier, not even 3 different lamps. Robbing twats.

norrahe
20th November 2012, 12:26
Tenant has been on the books for a year, no major problems apart from niggles with plumbing we knew might crop up at some point.

Tenant has problems with the fact the agent is trying to hit them with a £100 fee for renewal.

We've got insurance, reliable maintenance peeps. So short of producing a contract, registering with a deposit scheme that should do it.

Old Hack
20th November 2012, 12:26
So does that insurance also cover things like boiler cover etc as well? or do you take out seperate cover for that? I would have thought if its an insurance policy and you need to put in a claim for the boiler as a bit died on it then that's going to knacker your no claims etc come the subsequent year when you need to renew and obviously a boiler breakdown is a lot more likely to happen than someone trashing the property (hopefully!?!)

Yes, you get all sorts of cover een I didn't think of; I'll drag out the policy in a mo and list it

Support Monkey
20th November 2012, 12:36
Same. Have had a quote for £75 for three. I wouldn't mind but it was 3 bulbs in a 12 bulb chandalier, not even 3 different lamps. Robbing twats.

What do you charge an hour for your time.

I am not defending the price but your asking them to get in their van drive to your house and installed 3 lightbulbs so lets say an hours work. what would you charge

My son is an electrician and the company he works for charge £230 for a wall socket install.

Old Hack
20th November 2012, 12:57
So does that insurance also cover things like boiler cover etc as well? or do you take out seperate cover for that? I would have thought if its an insurance policy and you need to put in a claim for the boiler as a bit died on it then that's going to knacker your no claims etc come the subsequent year when you need to renew and obviously a boiler breakdown is a lot more likely to happen than someone trashing the property (hopefully!?!)

Here's a small breakdown of the cover:


Full rebuilding cover

Accidental damage to service
Subsidence
Burst pipes
Damage by emergency services
loss of rent following insured event (£20000)

Home emergency cover (£500) (including accomodation for the tenant) - Boiler dying, heating failing in winter, water leak, roof torn off in wind, etc, etc
Liability (£2m)
Contents (metered oil, stuff in shed, etc)


We're pretty happy with the cover. If the chaps stiff us for rent, we have cover for £25k worth o rent missed, and legal cover to get them out.

Thats £254 a year.

norrahe
20th November 2012, 13:16
Here's a small breakdown of the cover:


Full rebuilding cover

Accidental damage to service
Subsidence
Burst pipes
Damage by emergency services
loss of rent following insured event (£20000)

Home emergency cover (£500) (including accomodation for the tenant) - Boiler dying, heating failing in winter, water leak, roof torn off in wind, etc, etc
Liability (£2m)
Contents (metered oil, stuff in shed, etc)


We're pretty happy with the cover. If the chaps stiff us for rent, we have cover for £25k worth o rent missed, and legal cover to get them out.

Thats £254 a year.


Who's that with, looks a bit more comprehensive than what I have currently not to mention some shit insurance for the rental cover the agent has hit us with.

rootsnall
20th November 2012, 15:42
Is anyone renting out property direct? Any sites that they could recommend looking at?

I rent direct but its local so I can vet the tenants myself and handle any issues. Quite a bit tougher to go it alone if you aren't local, I probably wouldn't do it in that case but !? Depends how relaxed you are if the tulip hits the fan and the phone is ringing.

I found everything I needed on here FREE tenancy agreements and FREE landlords software from Property Hawk (http://www.propertyhawk.co.uk/) including the credit checking stuff by Alan Boswell.

Fandango
20th November 2012, 16:04
Here's a small breakdown of the cover:


Full rebuilding cover

Accidental damage to service
Subsidence
Burst pipes
Damage by emergency services
loss of rent following insured event (£20000)

Home emergency cover (£500) (including accomodation for the tenant) - Boiler dying, heating failing in winter, water leak, roof torn off in wind, etc, etc
Liability (£2m)
Contents (metered oil, stuff in shed, etc)


We're pretty happy with the cover. If the chaps stiff us for rent, we have cover for £25k worth o rent missed, and legal cover to get them out.

Thats £254 a year.

I'd be very interested in who that is with as well, if you don't mind sharing

Would a claim for a boiler repair knacker your no claims though?

Old Hack
21st November 2012, 08:58
I'd be very interested in who that is with as well, if you don't mind sharing

Would a claim for a boiler repair knacker your no claims though?

I guess it would, but it's cheap.

It's with the Halifax; the wife found it. They tried to up it this year, but we said we'd go elsewhere and they reduced it slightly, so we're paying around £20 a month now.

norrahe
21st November 2012, 09:17
I guess it would, but it's cheap.

It's with the Halifax; the wife found it. They tried to up it this year, but we said we'd go elsewhere and they reduced it slightly, so we're paying around £20 a month now.

Hmmm, do they cover non resident landlords, as I remember that was a bit of a problem.

Old Hack
21st November 2012, 09:32
Hmmm, do they cover non resident landlords, as I remember that was a bit of a problem.

Not too sure Norrahe. We're the over side of the country, but not abroad. I guess you could gie soemone right of atorney, or whatever it is called.

Give them a call.