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A fantastic piece of commentary on building a business based on trust was recently published by Deloitte (read it here if you have 5 minutes), talking about anticipation, agility, recovery and response in our new Covid-19 trading environment. 

While previous such pieces would focus exclusively on statistics, numbers and strategies, Deloitte referred to research about customer behavioural changes – peoples’ reluctance to touch anything, a revision of daily routines, and a new, ever-present vigilance about health and hygiene. 

To quote: “leaders will need to anticipate whether and how the pandemic has permanently altered behaviors, experiences, expectations, and the role of digital engagement. Understanding fears will be critical for leaders as they seek to restore confidence and chart a new path forward.”

How can this advice be carried over in to property? A blog by Goodlord suggested that agents should be adapting their offering and adding new services in direct response to the ‘new normal’. Here at ARPM, we agree.

Agents are in a prime position to balance sound buy-to-let investment advice and property management with our new cautious approach to human interactions and revised social rules. Many self-managing landlords will have spent the last three months navigating a whole new way of running tenancies, with increased communication with tenants, challenges over property access and potential rent collection issues. 

Add in an extension to the eviction ban, the full implementation of the Tenant Fee Act and incoming electrical safety standards, and self managing suddenly got a whole lot harder – especially for investors who live some distance from their let. Landlords will have found many of these extra ‘duty of care’ and compliance aspects unusual, even unwelcome.

There is a brilliant opportunity here for letting agents to upsell property management to landlords – delivering a level of customer service to tenants an amateur landlord may struggle to achieve and ensuring their contact with the investment is as minimal as possible.

As a letting agent, you will probably fall into one of two camps: a let-only business that doesn’t offer a property management service at all, or an agency with a small, perhaps overstretched, property management team unable to expand its managed portfolio, despite intentions to grow for greater profit. 

It’s clear that the demand for rental property is increasing, as are monthly rents, which should reignite buy-to-let activity. If you want to pitch for property management business and deliver landlords a ‘hands off’ investment, ARPM can help. Our centralized property management team will act as an extension of your own agency – with a white label service for a familiar, branded offering to landlords. We take care of tenancy administration, rent collection, compliance and maintenance so every manage let is legally sound and the asset protected.

Almost every aspect of our service is already digitalized to reduce social contact and when property visits are unavoidable, we already have protocols in place to deliver a set of safe repair, replace and testing services. ARPM also manages check ins, check outs, interim inspections and inventories on behalf of a letting agent – we pride ourselves on offering a level of support and niche property management expertise that is hard to achieve in-house.

Outsourcing to ARPM is also a cost-effective solution in a time when agents need to keep a careful eye on profit margins, as we charge on a ‘pay per managed property’ basis. There is no wastage, no mismanaged budgets or unfulfilled capacity. Our offering is transparent and easy to incorporate into a package offered to landlords. Contact ARPM to discover how we can help you upsell a ‘hands off’ approach to buy-to-let.

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