Most agents positive about sector but worried about virus

14 September 2020 | Renting

Most agents positive about sector but worried about virus

A survey of 350 lettings agents suggests the large majority feel positive about the rental market despite the challenges of new laws, increased regulation and the pandemic.

Just over half of respondents to the Goodlord survey also say they feel “very positive” about the future of their own agency.  

Meanwhile 84 per cent of respondents say they are confident their own businesses have the financial resources to continue operating for the foreseeable future, with only three per cent of respondents saying they are either un-confident or didn’t know.

Some 47 per cent cited the ongoing impact of the pandemic as their biggest worry. 

Two-thirds of survey respondents say arrears have increased as a direct result of Covid-19. Half of these say arrears have increased by up to 10 per cent and six per cent of respondents say arrears have increased by around a third or more.

Legislation and compliance is still a significant concern with a third of respondents naming this as their biggest concern. 

Compliance, property management, and issues surround check outs and managing voids appear the individually most challenging problems according to the survey. 

A quarter of respondents who describe pre-tenancy administration as “difficult” say reducing administration time is a key priority for them for the remainder of 2020.

Over half of respondents say technology and automation will be accelerated in their businesses as a direct result of Covid-19. A fifth of businesses will look to reduce the size of their workforce in line with this. 

Almost a third of respondents add that, although automation will remain similar to the pre-Covid-19 environment, they will prioritise technology enabling  workforce reductions or remote working.    

This post has originally been featured in Letting Agent Today.