Jan Hÿtch
15th Sep '15

Money Laundering - How clean are your deals?

There was a time when all we had to concern ourselves with once we had agreed terms on a sale transaction, was whether it would go through. How the buyer funded the purchase was their business – not ours. However in recent years it's become our businesses and indeed our liberty which is at risk if we're not very certain about where a purchaser's funds are coming from, or who the precise company or individuals who own a property are.

The Money Laundering Regulations (2007), the Proceeds of Crime Act (2002) and the Terrorism Act (2000) have obviously been with us for some time, and we have a legal obligation to ensure our estate agency and lettings businesses run compliant procedures. I am sure we are all aware that those of us and our staff who identify suspicious behaviour are co...

> Read Full Article
Jan Hÿtch
6th Aug '15

Successfully managing rent arrears

‘I know I should have called you before now, but I thought I could catch up with my rent arrears … ‘ The words that every letting agent knows will probably precipitate a potentially long and drawn out process of negotiation and resolution, with tenant, landlord, housing benefit team, and possibly other debtors and stakeholders too. But it doesn’t have to mean the end of an otherwise good tenancy.

I could write a book on the topic of arrears management alone, and it would cover every angle, every sad circumstance, every type of responsible and rogue tenant and landlord, and every happy and sorry outcome. But in the context of this brief article, a couple of broad brush strokes will have to do!

In managing rent arrears, as in all things in life, I feel it is generally bett...

> Read Full Article
Jane Gardner
20th Jul '15

Talking about successful lettings

At the beginning of June I presented for the first time in public, and, not being one for doing things in half measures, I took to the stage at the prestigious Lettings Live 2015 seminar, in conjunction with The Times & Sunday Letting Agency of the Year Awards, in front of over 500 delegates.

When I was asked to speak at the seminar by good friend and industry guru Peter Knight, I thought it would be a panel interview or, at most, a brief 10-15 minute presentation. Much to my surprise, it turned out to be a daunting 40-minute slot, one that took me almost 3 months to prepare for. I readily admit to being pretty terrified about standing in front of an audience of some of the best people in the lettings industry, and it took nerve and a whole lot of practice, to get me up on that pla...

> Read Full Article
Nicky Stevenson
16th Jul '15

How to engage with your team for best organisational performance

Ask great questions, listen to the answers, understand the key drivers, act on these for both your team members and customers and you will increase your organisational performance.

Starting my career in property 12 years ago, I have worked and interacted with various agents both in and out of London, and what is interesting to learn is that most use the 'carrot and stick' approach to team motivation. I believe that solely using this method is flawed.

An engaged work force is vital to any company. According to the 2013 Gallup survey just 17% of the UK workforce is engaged with 57% not engaged and 26% actively disengaged.

At the Property Academy, we use the saying 'discretionary effort' which is effectively going the extra mile, over and above the minimum requirement of our da...

> Read Full Article