A 400% increase in landlords turning to self management of their properties during COVID-19.
Research is showing that landlords are fed up with real estate and property management agencies. From hugely fluctuating costs, to a lack of inspections, to exorbitant charges for standard lease renewals, landlords feel they are paying a lot, and getting little in return.
The Atticism conducted a callout on behalf of their client, Instarent, to discover some of the most common complaints, and found a similar trend in responses.
“I have property in the country area. 6% mgt fee. Charged 1.5 weeks letting fee for each let which includes advertising, boards etc. I get really annoyed that I am charged for a monthly and annual rental statement. Also annoyed that I am charged 99c because the tenant is on benefits. Why should I pay?” – Belinda, Blue Mountains*
"I pay a 5% management fee on rent received. I don’t even remember the last time they did an inspection and I usually only hear from them if there is a problem (and then they demand immediate action) or the lease is due for renewal and they want approval for advertising fees. I pay a lease preparation fee each time the lease is renewed (even if the tenant breaks the lease) and have to pay all advertising fees if the tenants leave.” – Sara, Parramatta*
But, whilst almost all landlords we surveyed were unhappy with their agencies, many state that they are reluctant to strike out on their own to self-manage their properties. They’re nervous about dealing with difficult or needy tenants, being required to be ‘on call’ 24 hours a day or finding the time to get everything done.
“I have 11 rentals and would love to manage them myself but would need an app that I can put in the due dates of rent, copies of the leases signed, reminders for rent due, texts or notifications for rent paid, applications for hires should a tenant fall through & I need to access my waitlist. As my rentals are in 3 states, I can’t have a single property manager but am not sure how to do it all myself as I am just not qualified.” – Charlie, QLD*
Thankfully, there’s a third choice for landlords.
Instarent, is a licensed real estate agency, with a groundbreaking online real estate platform designed specifically for landlords. Instarent promises to streamline the whole rental process so landlords never have to deal with real estate agencies or property managers again.
Founded by AJ Chand and Aron Akca, Instarent is looking to disrupt the rental property status quo. Using advancing technology, Instarent can connect tenants directly with rental properties and landlords, organise inspections, take applications, screen and verify potential residents, collect rent, handle maintenance orders and even connect tenants directly with landlord-approved tradies and much more – all online, through an easy-to-use app.
AJ Chand, co-founder and CEO of Instarent, says, ‘Our clients want to be able to manage their rental properties easily and efficiently, and at an affordable price. And that’s what we’re all about.’
With social distancing requirements now in place, an app that can take on some of the in-person work is also a major selling point.
‘People really don’t want strangers coming into their homes right now, and for good reason,’ says Chand. ‘Rental agreements, maintenance requests and all other rental paperwork can be submitted online. All your conversations can take place here, as well as rental payments, too.’
Instarent is proving its worth to landlords across Australia already with a massive growth of over 400% over the last six months. Users call it effective, and are impressed with its ability to attract good quality, interested tenants. And with $5.5 billion dollars’ worth of property currently in the Australian property management industry, there is a great deal of opportunity for further growth.
While Instarent gives landlords the opportunity to self-manage their properties, it certainly doesn’t leave them high and dry. Instarent is a licensed real-estate agency and has a dedicated team of professionals who can assist with ongoing questions and advice for users.
Aron Akca, co-founder and Director of Sales and Marketing for Instarent, says, ‘We built Instarent right here in Australia using an incredibly talented team of developers and real estate professionals. We wanted to make sure that we captured the wealth of local knowledge within our platform.’ He says, ‘Even though it’s online, it’s no less effective.’
Online real estate platforms give landlords a middle ground. A place where they can effectively self-manage their rental properties, with the support of a professional property management system and team. And all at an affordable cost.
With real estate agencies charging between 5% and 9.9% of the rent each month, plus additional costs when lease renewals are up, inspections are due or maintenance issues arise, prices starting at $19.99 per month sound pretty good. Instarent is also happy to back itself. Currently it’s offering a 60-day free trial of their app.
‘We’re looking to reinvent the rental ecosystem,’ says Akca. ‘And we really believe in our product. We know if landlords give the free trial a go, they’ll believe in it, too.’
Launched in 2018, Instarent is already one of Australia’s fastest-growing PropTech companies and is the first fully integrated online solution for property owners to manage their own investment properties. It is a ‘set and forget’ end-to-end solution that manages and facilitates the entire property management ecosystem by automating the process for tenants, agents, landlords and tradespeople. Landlords can control all of their finances from one place and rent and manage their properties without a property manager; tenants can search for properties and communicate swiftly and easily with their landlords. The app also makes for seamless communication between landlords, tenants and even tradies.
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*We have changed the names of survey participants at the request of these people.