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Lettings Agency chief says landlords should become more professional

The boss of a lettings agency in London says there is a need for the private rental sector to become more professional in terms of meeting new health and safety, and legislative controls being imposed.

In an interview for The London Economic, Ashley Clements of west London lettings agency Horton and Garton, says increased demands are proving difficult for landlords in terms of compliance – and in turn that is leading more of them to use agents.

“The private rental sector has grown at lightning speed in recent years. In the affluent West London neighbourhoods of Hammersmith, Chiswick and Shepherds Bush, many owners have seen their properties grow exponentially in value,” he told the online publication.

“With significant equity in their properties, they decide to retain and let them when they move on. Our challenge within the lettings agency is to help professionalise these landlords by providing them with accurate and up-to-date advice on ever-changing legislation.”

Clements says many buy to let investors had not kept up with initiatives such as the Client Money protection scheme, nor with the higher standards expected by many tenants.

If landlords want to let their properties to the right kind of people — reliable tenants who look after the place and pay their rent on time — they need to make significant improvements to attract them, added Clements.

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