How to reduce complaints in your letting agency

The key to success for your letting agency – or indeed, any business – is keeping your customers happy. Providing a quality service ensures that those customers remain as such, and that you uphold a good reputation.

Suffice to say, one disgruntled customer could cause serious repercussions for your agency. Word of mouth travels fast, especially in the age of social media, meaning you could go on to lose even more custom.

However, if a recent survey is anything to go by, letting agencies as a whole have been letting their service quality slip.

Complaints to agencies up 20%

According to its latest report, The Property Ombudsman (TPO) revealed that it saw a 20% rise in formal complaints about agents in 2019.

As Letting Agent Today reports, the actual increase in enquiries from the public last year compared to 2018 was only 4%. Yet, the 20% increase relates to complaints taken up by TPO and then investigated as formal complaints.

A total 2,518 complaints dealt with by TPO were to do with lettings, while 1,669 related to sales and 780 to residential leasehold management.

When it came to the type of complaint related to lettings, management topped the list. This was followed by communication and record keeping, then complaints handling, tenancy agreements, inventories and deposits.

The way in which letting agents dealt with complaints features in the top three for lettings, sales and residential leasehold management.

The largest awards handed out by TPO last year were £17,644 for letting complaints, £20,200 for sales complaints and £21,439 for residential leasehold management. However average handouts were lower, at £635, £742 and £273 respectively.

Despite the 20% uptick in complaints, compensatory awards given to consumers by agents only rose by 1.4% to total around £2.2m.

How to limit complaints in your agency

Ultimately, the best way to minimise the risk of complaints about your letting agency is to develop a positive relationship with both landlords and tenants alike, and strive to provide the highest level of service.

This is where Stride comes in. We have formed close partnerships with high street letting agents and franchise owners, working with them as introducers for insurance and offering a wealth of services alongside this to help them improve their service.

Here are just some ways we can help you:

Arranging quality landlord and tenant cover

Protecting their portfolio is a landlord’s first priority. If you partner with us then you have access to specialist and tailored cover you can offer to landlords as well as tenants.

We’re different from other insurance specialists in that we’re an independent broker, so we’re not tied to a particular provider. We simply work with your and your customers' best interests at heart, sourcing the best cover for the most competitive price.

If landlords and tenants know they can turn to you for quality insurance, and you can help them to protect their homes and their belongings, this can help to ensure that you maintain a positive and trusting relationship with them.

Expert market insight

Letting agents need to be closely monitoring the market so that they can advise their customers in the best possible way. With Stride, you are granted access to a range of online content, covering everything from product leaflets to lead generation advice. This will allow you to provide informed advice and support to your customers, also helping to establish your expertise in the property market.

Additional services

A core responsibility of letting agents is making sure that they match the right tenants with the right properties and landlords. This can help to prevent the risk of any disputes, or issues relating to non or delayed payments, which could result in complaints to your agency.

The agencies that work with us can seek support from our tenant reference advisors and as well as rent guarantee experts. Our professionals have years of experience and industry knowledge, so you can expect the highest level of service and products.

A trusted partner

Partner with Stride and you’ll benefit from our extensive industry knowledge, have access to industry news and resources, and will be able to offer your customers flexible and specialist insurance tailored to their needs.

We’re regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority and work only with leading UK insurers, including AXA, Zurich, Aviva and Allianz. Get in touch today to find out more.

Published: 16th June 2020 (Maddie Dean)
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Need help finding the exact insurance for you? Get insured