In London alone, £730m was lost due to avoidable void periods, lasting 24 days on average last year.
Void periods are one of the worst challenges faced by landlords as they can have serious financial consequences, but many landlords feel totally unable to avoid them. The onus falls on letting agents to do more to minimise the risk of their clients getting stuck in extended periods without tenants.
Prop-tech letting firm, Home Made says that many of these void periods in London were very much avoidable, and places the blame squarely at the feet of inefficient letting agencies. They point out that there is a serious lag time between tenants handing in their notice and traditional letting agents finding new tenants.
In a study recently conducted by the firm, they found that there is a three week gap on average between letting agents first beginning their efforts and actually finding a new tenant. On top of this, they have also found that it takes an average of SIX DAYS before a letting agent even advertises a property after the previous tenant served notice.
Asaf Navot, founder and chief executive at Home Made, commented: “Empty rental properties are hurting everyone. Landlords are needlessly losing value on their investments and tenants are missing out on the home of their dreams.
“Our research shows that inefficient agency models are one of the driving factors keeping London homes unoccupied.
“Landlords are paying agencies for a service and if they are not delivering, they need to hold them to account.
“We’d urge landlords to ask their letting agent for transparency at every stage, from the date their property will be available online, through viewing volumes and feedback, all the way to move-in date.
“At Home Made we make this information readily available for landlords to track so they can ensure that every detail from appealing imagery to negotiating contracts is handled efficiently and as if the property were our own.”
Home Made also released the following figures from their study:
London boroughs with the shortest void periods in 2019
Richmond Upon Thames
London boroughs with the longest void periods in 2019