We are pleased to welcome James Landall, to our...
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Watts & Co Lettings is brought to you by Sam Watterson, a veteran landlord, investor and letting agent. Sam is one of the most driven, hard working letting agents you will ever meet and is an absolute technology nut. Before becoming a landlord and agent, his back ground was high level field sales and his degree in Business Information Technology, specifically how businesses use technology to improve means that he is obsessed with creating the best lettings proposition using the latest technology.
Ok, lets not mince our words, some of you will be reading this because you’ve already heard how awesome our service is and can’t wait to get working with us. If this is you then you can fill in our new Landlord form by clicking the link below. One of the team will be in touch to find out more about you, your requirements and to make arrangements to get the first property listed. All we require apart the information requested is a full set of tested keys and a pledge that you will operate to the same high standards that we do.
Some of you will be reading this as you have already begun your property journey with us and want to instruct us on more properties, we are very grateful for your business and promise to offer the same kick ass service for each property as if it were the first.
If you're not quite ready to go on the market or wanting to speak to someone face to face about the current trends, market rents and strategies to get you the best results, to arrange a property appraisal.
For those of you reading this who may be looking for a kick ass letting agent or just looking for more information on being a better landlord then please read on and I hope you find the information useful and I welcome any questions through my social media channels.
Landlords come in many shapes and sizes, from professional investors through to accidental landlords with varying degrees of knowledge and experience. When letting your property it is important to use an agency that understands your needs and represents your best interests not just their own.
Watts & Co Property is fair, ethical and honest, the services we offer are designed for landlords like you to keep your properties tenanted, well maintained and giving good returns.
Through our many years of experience we have identified the three corner stones of a lettings agents service.
Our proposition is designed around these three cornerstones and each of the steps below falls into one of the three categories.
Reading the above information is almost enough to make a landlord think why bother, no doubt by the time you are reading this, the legislation will have changed and this information will seem out of date. Here we will give you an over view of what our managed landlords get as part of the service to keep them on the right side of the regulations and stress free.
Take-on - When we take on a new property we request our landlords fill out the new property instruction as well as all the key information we will also prompt you for the certificates so you know what is necessary.
Listing - Once we have been provided all the information we will populate our property management system and advertise the property across all the portals inclusive of the EPC information and graph. We also make sure the safety certificates are not only saved in a drop box folder shared with each landlord but also uploaded to the CRM system with expiry dates diarised for automated reminders.
Applications and references - When we have found an applicant for the property we complete their references using an online application system, this automatically sends the tenants a copy of the gas safety certificate, EPC, deposit prescribed information and terms and conditions and the how to rent guide. As part of the referencing process we also confirm the tenants right to rent and include that confirmation in the reference report.
Move in – As part of the inventory and check in process a member of staff will test the smoke alarms and once received the deposit will be protected in the DPS - our CRM system flags up which deposits need protecting and how long they have been held for, this ensures that none are missed and are always protected in time.
Post Move in - Once the deposit has been protected and the certificate received from the DPS we then compile a report specifically to comply with the de regulation act, this collates all the safety certs and other required documentation in to one report that is emailed to the tenants, uploaded to the CRM system and also stored in the drop box folder. This means should we need to serve a section 21 we can easily demonstrate that we have complied with the requirements.
Audit – Every month we compile all the lets from the previous month into a spread sheet and tick off all the documentation, as simple and crude as this system is we then know that we have ticked all boxes and that all the documents are present and are in the Dropbox folder shared with the landlord.
A little extra time at the start saves us ever having to deal with missing files, document audits and phone calls requesting copies, we don't have filing cabinets full of paper, we comply with data protection as the information is secure and we never have to deal with archives.
Examples of all this documentation and procedures can be made available to view by your negotiator.
For every landlord we deal with it's important to take a pro-active and consultative approach, our service starts from the moment a landlord or potential landlord starts to think about renting a property out, not just when the keys are handed over.
Although the majority of our business is done by phone, email and using the internet, our clients are always welcome to arrange a face-to-face meeting either at a property, our head office or our network of satellite offices, to sit down, have a brew and discuss a property they rent out, are looking to rent out or are thinking of adding to their portfolio.
We charge no marketing fees; hold landlords to no obligations and only charge when we find the tenants on a strictly no-let, no-fee basis.
In most instances the initial meeting will be at the property in question, we will consult on what needs to be done prior to let, what market we will be aiming for, time frames and rental potential.
We can then discuss our fees, terms of business and run through our procedures in more detail.
From there we can actively look to market your property and move things forward to the marketing stage.
To book a lettings appraisal today click here *Form Link*
Without a shadow of a doubt the most important part of letting a property is having a full set of up-to date, accurate and enticing pictures.
When we visit your property we will take a full set of photographs using a Digital SLR camera complete with wide angled lens and bounce flashgun. This gives us a professional standard portfolio of photographs that gives all potential tenants a better perspective of the property.
The property will then be marketed across all the major web sites including Rightmove, Zoopla and Gumtree as well as our own easy to use, highly optimized site and social media sites such as Facebook.
We will erect a to-let board, cross-reference our database of recent applicants and start booking the viewings in immediately.
We will also make full use of other social media and platforms such as twitter, LinkedIn and you-tube to get your property in front of as many potential tenants as possible.
You will be amazed at how quickly and efficiently we go from instruction to viewings.
Our lettings philosophy is simple:
Good pictures + detailed advert = more enquiries = more viewings = houses let quicker
At Watts & Co we know an unanswered phone could be a missed opportunity, not only do we have multiple active phone lines but also a call answering service to pass messages on if the lines are busy.
Our aggressive attitude to enquiries means we fill our diary full of viewings and get our properties let quickly.
We also understand that a lot of people have busy lives and it's not always convenient to view during the day, our office is open for viewings in the evening and Saturdays all year round, we know the importance of getting a viewing booked in quickly and aim to show people round within 48hrs.
We have also perfected a model of working with other local agents to make sure we maximise all opportunities to find the tenants that are looking to rent.
For us it's not just about getting a fee and moving on, we want to build a business and work with the same landlords and their network year in year out.
We recognize that all the good work of finding tenants can be quickly undone in an instant if the tenants are of poor quality. It’s not always possible to predict all eventualities but we minimize the risk of bad tenancies by using a rigid and robust online referencing system.
All tenants and guarantors are credit checked, with a comprehensive overview of their previous tenancy and also employment status gathered.
We believe in empowering our landlords throughout this process so the system has been designed to send an offer letter with all the details of the tenancy included before the tenants references start.
Once the references are completed the landlords are required to sign the AST, which gives them total control of who will be living in their property.
One of the team would be more than happy to go through this process in more detail with you if you want to arrange a market appraisal *form link*
Property management isn't just about the property, but also about building relationships with the tenant; if the tenants are happy, the rent is more likely to be paid on-time and the tenancies longer and more successful.
The beating heart of the Watts & Co machine is the property management department, existing entirely online.
All rents are collected on the 1st of every month by standing order, these are then processed through our cloud based property management software which automatically credit's each landlords account and deducts fees before creating a payment run and emailing out invoices and property management reports. We complete payment runs each Friday with payments made at close of play.
The main reason why landlords give us properties to manage is hassle; many of them have demanding professional lives and don't want the constant headaches a rental property can bring. We don't believe a landlord should have to manage the managing agent and therefore we run an efficient maintenance department using the greatest skill of all - common sense. If a tap leaks - we fix it, if a door falls off - we fix it..... Unless requested otherwise in advance any minor repair will be completed and the cost of which included on the monthly rental statement, we will keep landlords informed and contact them immediately with complex problems and come to them with solutions to problems not just the problems themselves.
All maintenance requests are made by email to a dedicated email address and handled in real time by the maintenance team. Our established team of contractors and maintenance engineers are fully equipped to deal with all the issues raised and we are also able to provide quotes for larger projects and full refurbishments.
We will also manage all safety certificates, inventories, notice periods and deposits. Prices available on request.
All landlord are given full 24/7 access to their account through our web-site log in facility (click here) as well as being able to send messages for the following:
We keep our tenants happy by giving them the respect that is sometimes not offered by other agencies. We will always liaise with them regarding tradesman's visits and always give notice of any pending repairs or viewings.
For let-only properties the landlord will be sent the tenants details once the deposit has been paid, this will enable them to protect it using a government scheme within the allotted time period.
For managed properties the deposits will be protected within the DPS and the tenants will be issued with a certificate and also terms and conditions.
At the end of the tenancy, following on from the check out inspection, we will liaise with the landlord and discuss any deposit deductions before putting these forward to the tenants and also dealing with any disputes.
The rent collection is fully automated with a strict and rigid arrears collection and debt recovery procedure on place. We use a combination of communication, mediation and court action to prevent and recover rent arrears.
Landlords will be given a statement with each payment run that contains their invoice with unique and VAT reference information.
We are also able to produce end of year final accounts for each property if requested.
Our head office is located in Burley, Leeds, LS4, from here we cover the whole of West Yorkshire and since January 2017 we have adapted our business model to tie in more with the needs of serious investors and developers.
We now have properties in Hull, Castleford, Doncaster and will be looking over the coming years to expand from Liverpool to Hull across the M62 Corridor and then From Leeds down to Nottingham. Our expansion plans into these areas will involve locally based staff working from smaller satellite offices again teaming up with local agents.
We predominantly look after professional tenants but we do have the experience to deal with student lets and some HMO’s – we limit the amount of HMO’s we take on in each area to decrease the likelihood of vacants. Our specialty is working with investors on larger build to rent style developments whereby keeping the sites fully occupied is critical to the model succeeding. There are plenty of case studies available here.
To speak to us about a property or properties you have in these or other areas please *click here* to arrange a property appraisal.
With so many letting agents available it can sometime be hard to decide which one to choose.
By choosing Watts & Co Property you will benefit from the following:
So the big news is interest rates have gone up by 0.25%.