Are Letting Agents Over-Charging Landlords

ARE LETTING AGENTS OVER-CHARGING LANDLORDS?

Despite the country still being in an economic downturn, it seems that some professions really are making a handsome profit from the services they provide. Take letting agents as an example.

It was recently revealed that Haart Letting Agents in Maidstone, Kent charged a landlord £90.99 to simply replace the pull-chord string on a bathroom light switch. The invoice, which was handed to the understandably bemused landlord, stated that the pull-chord string cost £5.99 and the labour charge to fit the string was £85! When the landlord contacted the manager of Haart, Maidstone to complain, the manager did not reply.

Let’s assume that the work took 1 hour to do, which clearly it did not – this would mean that the hourly rate would equate to (pro rata) a salary of £11,900 per month for the handyman who carried out the work. Aside from being an extortionate rip-off, there is clearly very good money to be made in the lettings agency profession.

The landlord, who did not wish to be named, stated that, despite having a substantial property portfolio that yielded very good returns, there is no way he would earn that kind of money from his property rents and was considering swapping his career to become a letting agent.

Letting agents can make a handsome profit from managing a landlord’s property or property portfolio. They can rightly charge a fee for finding a tenant and then add additional fees to take the rent and also manage the property. If work is also required to be undertaken at the property on behalf of the landlord, there is also a very good fee to be made, as we can see from the charges that are levied by Spicer Hart in Maidstone, just as an example.

So, the question is, if you are looking for a career as a firefighter, police officer or train driver, when you can earn approximately £30,000, why not turn your back on these honest/hard-working careers when you can start a career as a highly lucrative and successful letting agent?