Santosh Sagoo started researching property investment about four years ago. Like a lot of buy-to-let landlords, her investment strategy goal is to someday have enough income from renting that she can be financially free.
In 2015 she bought a property in Staffordshire. She is based in London, so her sourcing agent recommended a local letting agent who could manage the property for her. They offered a competitive property management rate (8% of the monthly rent) and promised regular updates, inspections every 6 months, keeping on top of repairs, etc.
She was very happy with the deal in the beginning, but within a year into her contract things started to unravel. First, she stopped receiving her monthly rental statements and had to chase repeatedly to get them again. When she visited her property and had a chat with her tenant, she discovered there were ongoing issues after the original refurb, but the agency had never mentioned them despite the tenant’s repeated reports. Issues she believed were resolved were still outstanding, and neither she or the tenant were happy with the service they were receiving.
Managing the property managers
When she asked the lettings agent why the problems were never reported or resolved after inspections, it transpired the promised regular inspections had never happened. She had chased for her inspection reports but they were never sent to her. However, she trusted these were done. She then received a text message from the boiler engineer telling her she was overdue for the annual inspection. She put him in touch with the lettings agent so that they can liaise and arrange a suitable time for the inspection, but nothing happened. After months of chasing, the inspection was finally done. It would have been quicker for her to arrange the inspection herself.
At this point, it increasingly felt like she was paying for having to manage her property manager. With an unhappy tenant and a service that didn’t deliver to the promised level, Santosh decided to look into other options. She briefly considered self-managing, but she was not keen to create another job for herself and was weary of having to keep on top of property legislation she was not fully aware of. Then she discovered Howsy
‘I went to the Property Investor Show in April and heard your CEO speaking on stage. It was inspiring and I immediately liked the idea, then I spoke to your team and everybody had great energy and enthusiasm. So I knew when the time came to change lettings then Howsy would be my first choice. Later, when things with my other lettings agent were getting from bad to worse I decided to make the move and join.’
‘Everything went ahead smoothly and your team made the experience pleasant. When I spoke to the Howsy property manager I had another surprise: I discovered the previous agent had also failed to register my tenant’s deposit when the tenancy was issued. But Tyler put me through to your legal helpline service and that was very helpful. I wasn’t even aware this service was provided but this was a nice surprise. I gained valuable guidance and an understanding of my rights and my tenants rights. This helped me address this stressful issue more effectively and confidently.’
What she likes about Howsy
‘I like getting regular updates and the 24/7 aspect of it, also having specialised teams for each side of management (nr: legal, repairs, etc). So I feel confident I’m getting the best service in all areas. Overall it’s been a positive experience, I already recommended you to two of my friends and the main thing is my tenant is happy and has extended her tenancy whereby before the tenant was thinking of leaving. So I am a happy landlord with Howsy on board!’
At Howsy we strive to make landlords’ and tenants’ lives as pleasant as possible. Besides free advertising, credit and reference checks and contracts, our service includes regular inspections, repairs management however you like it and rent collection. Not to mention a 24/7 service for you and your tenants and a free legal helpline. Everything for £35pm if you’re outside London and £54 in London. No hidden fees, and no long term contracts. Start using Howsy today!