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Build-to-Rent and Letting Agent houses

What Can Letting Agents Learn from Build-to-Rent?

30 June 2020 Simon Banks Read time: 3 min
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Simon Banks

Build-to-Rent is one of the UK property market’s most recent success stories. There are more than 150,000 units both live and in construction. And Planning permission for Build-to-Rent homes has grown 20% year on year.

With the rental market accounting for 25% of the housing market by 2021 and by 60% of the London market by 2025, seeing an increase of renter-designed homes is no surprise. These buildings offer a holistic living experience that encapsulates the lifestyle of modern-day renters.

Built off the ideals of renters, Build-to-Rent emphasises on flexible living in modern apartments with shared, fun social spaces. Clearly, Build-to-Rent is doing something right. But can you lettings agency benefit from its approach to the rental market?

In this article, we’re looking at plus-points of Build-to-Rent and how letting agencies can find inspiration from Build-to-Rent communities.

A renter-first approach

We understand the differences between Build-to-Rent operations and how a lettings agency works. Build-to-Rent is effectively the landlord, so there’s no need to mediate between two parties, and it can focus solely on the renter. Yet, the renter-first approach is an exciting concept.

Property for rent

As an agent, you want to do right by your landlords and get high-quality renters in their properties. One of the best ways of doing this is to appeal to the mindset of renters and provide a service that’s focused on the entire renting landscape.

Communication, for example, plays a huge role and can go a long way in fostering a renter-first approach. Many renters struggle to make themselves available during normal working hours. After all, they are working. You don’t need to be available 24/7, but offering a flexible way to converse with them will improve relations and essentially lead to more rented properties.

Use technology to enhance the renting experience

Build-to-Rent is thriving when it comes to implementing technology, including having a centralised system that connects everyone in the building together. Even if you’re not managing the property, there are other Build-to-Rent tech processes worth exploring.

From using tools for task management to having a strong social media game, tech-led initiatives appeal to modern-day renters and often help cut down the length of time it takes to rent a home. Faster lets and more instructions. Now that sound like a sweet deal.

Champion video viewings

Build-to-Rent didn’t invent the video viewing, but it’s one of the sectors that have enhanced how renters view homes. With the majority of renters tech-savvy, it makes sense to provide a way for them to view a home without physically going to the property.

Video viewing

With video viewings, they can see what it’s like to live in a home via the medium of video. Short, unfiltered videos that capture the feeling of living in a property act as a genuine alternative to physically viewing somewhere. If your agency hasn’t already embraced video viewings, it’s time to get in on the action.

Jump on the Movebubble bandwagon

We love working with our partners, whether they’re letting agents or Build-to-Rent operators. As a renter-first platform, our goal is to bring high-quality homes to our thousands of renters – no matter the type of property.

There isn’t a better way to secure professionally vetted renters (ok, we’re a bit biased), and grow your brand. Especially as we provide you with an unlimited amount of video walkthroughs on our platform, which reduces the cost of physical viewings by a whopping 1,300%.

Emphasise the ideals of community

Selling the ideals of community isn’t so easy if you don’t have a plush building with social spaces to market. But there are other ways to take a leaf out of the Build-to-Rent book and promote the importance of the local community.

If you’re a high-street agent, there’s every chance that you know the area better than most. Yet, too often, many letting agents don’t emphasise the fact that they are the number one source for learning about a postcode.

A community of people

Don’t merely highlight the property’s features; let renters know about the area, from local community events to the best places to grab a bite. You don’t need a 250-plus apartment building to highlight the importance of community. That can be found in the local area. The area you know better than everyone else.

Making your agency even better

There’s enough room for Build-to-Rent and traditional lettings in the market. But there’s no harm in cherry-picking the best bits of both worlds to create a fully-functional agency that secures high-calibre renters in their droves. The result will be happy renters and happy landlords. Oh, and lots of shiny new instructions.

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