Managing agents have many important jobs, but perhaps the most important is collecting rent from our tenants.
Most tenants do the right thing and pay their rent on time – but some can find themselves in financial difficulty, and fall behind.
The legislation is very clear on rental arrears. We firstly need to wait for the tenant to be 7 clear days in arrears before the first breach notice is issued. If the tenant does not rectify the breach in 7 days, we can follow up with a Notice to Leave and begin the eviction process.
Evicting a tenant is an unfortunate conclusion to a situation that we seek to avoid. Tenants are left without a home, owners are out of pocket and we are tasked with hours of extra work. Because of this, we’re consistently refining our procedures which are designed to mimise risk of tenancy eviction due to arrears.
1. Stringent Application Procedure
It all starts with the tenancy application, which is carefully screened. We check rental history, including ledgers which display the tenant’s history of rental payments. We also verify income to ensure that the tenant will be able to afford the rent.
Sometimes, we need to be the bad guys and decline applications due to affordability. It would be irresponsible for us to place these tenants as we have a duty of care to both owners and tenants.
2. Thorough Tenant Induction
95% of tenants will do the right thing so long as they’re given strict guidelines and followed up closely. Part of our tenant induction process explains, in detail, their responsibilities, and the consequences of not paying on time.
3. Strict Rental Arrears Management
Done correctly, managing rental arrears is a skilled task that requires meticulous attention to detail and knowledge of current legislation.
For this reason, our Accounts Manager Carol is allocated this task. Carol starts each and every day monitoring rent payments and contacting any tenant who falls behind.
This hands-on approach to rent management is designed to get tenants back on track with their rent should they fall behind. Our aim is to resolve the issue before it gets out of hand.
Agents who are not proactive in managing arrears are not only risking their owner clients’ rental income, but are also being complacent in damaging a tenant’s rental history. An agent that allows a tenant to be constantly in arrears is contributing to the problem.