The Importance of Referencing
21 Oct 2011
In an ideal world, once a tenant has been found, it would be good to think that the landlord can simply sit back and watch his/her investment deliver the anticipated return on investment without further involvement. Indeed, this is one of the reasons why some letting agents only offer a tenant finding service. Simple really – or is it?
But experience is a great teacher, and we have proven time and again that tenants must be fully referenced before signing. Indeed, before we rent a property to even the most apparently upright tenants, we thoroughly research their rental history. This involves checking with a credit referencing agency and enquiries from a previous landlord.
Unreliable tenants cause landlords the most sleepless nights according to research by the National Landlords Association, with 57% of NLA members saying that unreliable tenants are one of the most worrying aspects of being a landlord.
So what is a reliable tenant? Well obviously one who pays the rent, in full on time, and makes sure all the utility bills are also paid. But reliability goes beyond this. Will they turn out to be anti-social, perhaps making excessive noise, leading to complaints from neighbours? Good landlords are keen to make sure that their tenants behave as ‘good citizens’.
Damage to the premises, fixtures, fittings and contents, creates hassle for landlords as well as significant additional expense, especially when it goes beyond what is covered by the tenant’s deposit."
Approximately 36% of landlords nationally (source NLA) have, at some point in the past, been obliged to resort to the courts to seek possession of a property from a troublesome tenant. Our job as dedicated letting agents is to ensure that the right tenant is secured in the first place, and then managed well, so that the landlord can enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing your investment is delivering a return on investment, not a headache.