How to Let Property with an Online Letting Agent
Whether you’re a seasoned landlord seeking an alternative to your current letting agent, or a newbie renting out your property for the first time, you’ll no doubt have questions about the online rental process.
Listing on Mashroom
In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits of moving away from traditional agents, as well as the ins and outs of advertising a property online. With a few helpful hints and tips, you’ll soon be a pro at letting and managing your property with an online letting agent.
Should I let property online or with the high street?
For landlords who’d like full control over their property and are happy to be involved in its management, this is a no brainer. Online letting agents provide many of the same services as high street agents, but at a much lower cost, thanks to fewer overheads.
To put the difference into perspective, it could cost you around £750 to find a tenant with a traditional letting agent, plus 10-15% of your monthly rental income for property management. With Mashroom, you can do all of this for free.
By advertising a property online, you’re also likely to secure a tenant faster, as the process is more streamlined and any interested parties will have access to your listing 24/7. What’s more, your agent won’t be limited to one small geographical area, making it easier to let property in different regions.
What information do online letting agents need to advertise with them?
Whether you choose to let your property online or via the high street, there are several legal requirements that landlords must meet. If you don’t, you won’t be able to let your property.
Rental homes must have an up-to-date EICR and gas safety certificate, as well as a valid EPC that confirms the property has an energy efficiency rating of least ‘E’. If you don’t have these things in place, Mashroom can arrange for the assessments to be carried out for a fixed fee.
Once you can prove that your property meets the required standards and we’ve confirmed your identity through an ID check, you’ll be free to list and let your property online.
Finally, when creating an online listing for your rental property, you’ll need to provide information about its location, size, number of rooms, features, availability and the cost per month. You’ll also need to give us the full address, although this won’t be publicly advertised.
Provide photos of the property
A key element of any property listing are the images you choose to include. When listing a property with an online letting agent, you’ll need good quality photos that will grab people’s attention amongst lots of other listings. This will help increase your chances of getting viewings and ultimately signing a tenant.
We recommend adding at least 7-12 photos taken in natural light, showing each room in your home from its best angle. Make sure your property is clean and tidy, removing any rubbish or clutter and making up beds. You may also want to switch on lights to brighten dull rooms and dress tables to make them look more homely.
While a professional camera with a wide-angled lens is the best option for this, you can also take photos on a high quality smartphone camera, ideally using a tripod to prevent any blurring. You can then upload images to a computer and edit them to improve their quality.
If this all sounds a bit much, we can also organise a professional photography session for a one-off fee. This ensures you get the best results possible. The package also includes a floor plan to help prospective tenants picture the layout of the property more clearly.
Provide a description of your property
When it comes to renting out your home via an online letting agent, you’ll often have the opportunity to write your own property description. While this might sound overwhelming at first, it really doesn’t have to be.
Start by providing :
- A simple overview of your property
- Description about what sets your property apart
- Location of your property
- Finally, double check your listing for any spelling errors
Property overview. By focusing on its key features like the number of bedrooms, type of property and its location. For example, “2 Bedroom Semi-Detached House, York”.
Description about what sets your property apart. Showcasing its best features clearly and concisely is always a great idea. As the property’s owner, you’re best placed to identify these aspects –the things you like most about your property are likely to be what attracts new tenants too.
Location of your property. As this is often a priority for renters you should always consider : What are the local transport links like? Are there any good shops or schools nearby? What about green spaces like parks? If there are, highlight them. You should also include key selling points like off-road parking.
Double check your listing for any spelling errors. That could undermine your listing and eventually your letting. Carefully check the spelling and make sure you haven’t included any personal details, unnecessary capital letters or links to other websites – otherwise, your listing could be banned.
Where will online letting agents advertise my property?
Unlike traditional agents that advertise available properties in local newspapers and their own high-street office windows, online letting agents can target larger audiences using digital marketing.
Online letting agents will list your property on well-known property portals like Rightmove and Zoopla –which get over 177 million web visitors every month combined – to get your property in front of as many potential clients as possible.
These portals are now the best way to let property online. They’re accessible at any time of day, so people can browse listings in their free time rather than having to visit an office during the day.
People can also use filters to narrow down their search and find a property that meets their requirements, helping to reduce poor-quality leads.
At Mashroom, we offer landlords 2 months’ free listing on the 2 main property portals listed above, as well as our own integrated rental platform.
If you need longer, you’ll then have the option to purchase a 30-day add-on, but on average it only takes 14 days to secure a tenant using our online advertising process.
How do I manage my property with an online agent?
Once you’ve let your property, you’ll then need to decide how you’re going to manage it. Traditional letting agencies often provide fully managed services for an eye-watering monthly fee.
But at Mashroom, we believe in empowering landlords to keep their full rental income and manage their own properties online. After all, as the owner, you’re legally responsible for the property and its condition either way.
Using a suite of free tools within our dedicated platform, you’ll be able to respond to tenant queries, organise maintenance and repairs using our extensive tradesperson database and collect monthly rent payments with ease.
And when the time comes to find a new tenant, you can manage your listing, arrange viewings and set up new tenancy agreements, all within the dashboard.
Need help with letting your property online?
From helping you meet legal requirements to providing tips for an effective property description, our friendly team is always on hand to provide assistance when you need it.