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  • Buy-to-Let

    Upad v Openrent

    My apologies if this has been discussed before. I have used Upad so far to advertise my properties with good results. I notice Openrent are a fair bit cheaper to advertise and reference. I would be interested in the Tribe members personal experience of either Company.

    Darryl.
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    Interested to hear what people have to say.
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    John Corey 


    I host the London Real Estate Meet on the 2nd Tuesday of every month since 2005. If you have never been before, email me for the 'new visitor' link.

    PropertyFortress.com/Events

    Also happy to chat on the phone. Pay It Forward; my way of giving back through sharing. Click on the link: PropertyFortress.com/Ask-John to book a time. I will call you at the time you selected. Nothing to buy. Just be prepared with your questions so we can use the 20 minutes wisely.

    Hi Darryl,

    I'll spare you my obviously biased opinions on our superior product and customer service! However you might be interested in what our customers are writing on independent review sites:

    https://www.trustpilot.co.uk/review/www.openrent.co.uk

    If you have any questions about what we can offer you please do get in touch with us on info@openrent.co.uk.

    Beyond that I'll join John as an interested observer of any comments!

    Adam
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    I'll declare an interest - I am a Upad fan and have been using them with fabulous success since they launched. They are clearly the industry leader, however ....

    I'm also open to exploring other options, and have just tried a different agent - and my properties haven't had anywhere near the number of viewings that they would have had with Upad. In fact it has been a disaster, they are unlet in spite of dropping the price, and I am about to write off my payment and put them back on Upad.

    I guess what I should do now is give Openrent a trial.

    The companies you want to avoid are the ones that offer the Portals for an unbelievable price, but the tenants are compelled to pay the agent various fees - that puts your property at a disadvantage to the others available from agents without fees (such as Upad & Openrent).

    It's good that Open Rent are so transparent about their charges. As far as I am concerned the only service worth paying for is the £49 one but pay for referencing (another £20, otherwise the tenant has to pay a fee and you may as well save your money and not bother going on the portals.

    A Guild of Landlords member (affiliate link) can get Upad advertising for £49.50p & Tenant Vetting for £5.95. Unless I'm getting the wrong end of the stick equivalent services are:

    Openrent £69

    Upad £55.45


    Of course that does mean that you have to join the Guild - but as their support services are second to none that's a no brainer anyway.
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    Hi Nick,

    Please do give us a try, your first listing includes a no obligation 5 day free trial of advertising with no payment details required. Just to clarify our pricing (all inc VAT):

    - Advertising only is £29. References can be purchased by the landlord for £20 per applicant and we're happy for you to recoup this cost from tenants if you wish.

    - Rent Now (advertising plus tenancy creation) is £49. We create the tenancy for you including taking a holding deposit, issuing contracts (with digital signatures), deposit protection and collection of first month's rent. In this case referencing is paid for directly by tenants at £20 each taken from their holding deposit. You are still in complete control throughout the process, and the tenancy and deposit will all be in your name.

    As a further note, our referencing is comprehensive (including employer and previous landlord checks as well as credit check) while I believe the Guild vetting at that price is a credit check only.

    And don't forget to add VAT to Upad prices if you're not VAT registered!

    Best,

    Adam
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    Adam,

    Your offering is better than I thought, specifically:
    • The Upad prices I quote are ex-VAT
    • Whilst I think most LL are comfortable with creating the tenancy, the digital signatures are a plus

    The Guild Standard Tenant Vetting is:

    • The Electoral Roll
    • County Court Judgments (England and Wales)
    • Scottish Decrees (Scotland)
    • Credit Information shared among the UK’s major financial institutions and retailers
    • Council of Mortgage Lenders records on repossessions
    • CIFAS (The UK’s Fraud Prevention Service) provides information about applications for credit suspected to be fraudulent.
    • GAIN (Gone Away Information Network) shares information on customers with outstanding debts who have moved home without providing a forwarding address.
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    Not used Upad before but having previously tried Openrent, I can highly recommend them.

    I bought the advertising only package after my former tenant had to leave suddenly during the quiet month of February, and within 4 days I had found a suitable replacement.

    The people I dealt with at Openrent were polite and courteous which made the whole experience pleasant and straightforward.

    When the time comes, I'll happily use them again!!
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    Adam,

    I'm trialling your advertising service, and I see that you won't take adverts if the Landlord charges the tenant any fees - what's that about?
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    Hi Nick,

    Our policy of not allowing admin fees is really about trying to be as fair and transparent as possible to both landlords and tenants throughout the process. It allows us to advertise all properties as such, which generates a better response to the ads we place. It also generates an increasing number of enquiries directly via the OpenRent site by tenants who are looking to move without the usual fees charged by high street letting agents.

    Many of our landlords find that by using OpenRent they save a significant amount vs using a high street or even other online agent to find tenants and create the tenancy - we will happily do all this for £49 using our Rent Now service. By saving on fees in this way they then find they can do without charging tenants, and still end up comfortably ahead in the deal.

    On OpenRent the cost of referencing (to a max of £20 per applicant) is typically covered by tenants, while any other costs are covered by landlords; we provide templates and guidance on things like inventory so that there needn't be a cash cost to any of these. Obviously the option is there to use paid services if required, and we offer these at the best possible rates, but that's entirely up to the individual landlord.

    Hopefully the fact that we have quickly grown to become the largest online letting agent in the country is proof that our model is popular with landlords and tenants alike!

    Adam
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    Hi Adam,

    I've upped our rent to cover the admin fee. The reason we charge an admin fee is to put the tenants costs in line with our own - so that the tiny number of tenants who wish to break the tenancy early have paid. Your system isn't fair on the long term tenancies.
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    I like the tenant having to pay me a small fee to cover my time and effort in checking them out, otherwise lots of possible tenant will just say they are interested and then change their mind after I have done the checks.

    Then of course I wish to have a “holding deposit” to cover my risk of taking it off the market, if they will not sign a AST and start paying rent very quickly.
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