Forum Home Search Login Register
+  Landlord Forum
|-+  General Category
| |-+  Landlord Advice & Help
| | |-+  Processing Application - Rejecting / declining viewing requests

Processing Application - Rejecting / declining viewing requests

Pages: [1]
Print
Author Topic: Processing Application - Rejecting / declining viewing requests  (Read 79 times)
Newbie
Posts: 3

I like property

« on: February 17, 2021, 11:10:40 PM »

Hey everyone,

I'm very new to this landlord world so bare with me!

I'm currently working my way through pre-assessments on potential tenants before the next stage of confirming a viewing. My one question which I'm struggling to get advice on when I trawl through the internet... How do I tell someone that they aren't right for the property and that I don't want to accept their request for a viewing!!

I don't want to waste my time offering individuals a viewing knowing full well I won't accept their offer, especially when I have other more suitable potentials. There's been a number of reasons including, lying about some of their circumstances, their income just about covers their rent & bills, really bad manners, wont answer some of the rather basic & legitimate questions I put forward despite reiterating these, and that good old gut feeling!

Any words of wisdom will be massively helpful!
Global Moderator
Hero Member
Posts: 3859

I like lots of things

« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2021, 11:38:19 AM »

I very rarely stop someone from undertaking a viewing. If you want to maintain a facade of professionalism while someone is not being professional towards you (and by that I mean - don't just ignore them and let the request die on the vine - which is also a route you can happily take (which also keeps them in reserve as it were)) then just tell them you have enough viewings to work through at this moment in time and you'll be in touch if they don't work out... then you won't risk offending anyone by telling them you think they're rude or poor or something. Are you lying? Sure you are. Do you want to tell them the truth you've come to? Why? You don't need to trawl the Internet for answers like this.

My view of the world... having done this across many properties for years... is that people can surprise you and the best way of solidifying your gut-feel is to eye-ball people. For example... a person you talk to who didn't send you some piece of information you wanted (maybe because they're Dyslexic or something, or just excitable) can change your mind when they're in front of you. A person who is lying about their circumstances must be a very poor liar if you've caught them out already. People who seem great on paper can also seem less great in real life... like your frightening ultra-demanding Tenant. Those are the ones to avoid... as there'll always be something wrong with your property in their eyes. For this reason I do phone calls and then arrange viewings. Viewings are an aspect of the job... it's not your time you're wasting... it's your job you're doing.
Global Moderator
Hero Member
Posts: 3859

I like lots of things

« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2021, 11:43:15 AM »

Be wary of your first impressions and gut-feelings so early on. For example... if you wrote an enquiry to me like you have above then I'd have already assessed you as inadequate... use of "bare"... double exclamation marks, the ampersands in the middle of sentences... you get my point? Obviously you are a very capable person and you were probably just rushed... but my first impressions cannot be allowed to take over. Remember that all those prospective Tenants also have plenty of fish in the sea (irons in the fire?) too... and coming to do a viewing for something they cannot afford is a waste of their own time... their enquiry to your property is also likely one of many and they may have a set of Landlords chasing them for data. It's a trying time and that's why I like to meet people... it was a lot easier in pre-Covid times... I'd try to arrange a bunch of viewings on the same day (never a block viewing as I do not like that practice) and allocate 45 minutes to each one... then I would be at the property for, hopefully, five or six the first day but, for me, it's just the one visit... it's very rare that I've had to arrange viewings beyond that.

For me, nowadays, I mostly am asking people how long they intend to stay for... I'm keen on longer-term Tenants... if someone tells me it's a stepping-stone to buying their own property in eighteen months, I am less keen on those than those who tell me that, sadly, their business has failed, their grand plans are in tatters, and they're now just a regular employed Joe and have no realistic plans to get on the housing ladder... I am even more keen on those that have less a upwardly mobile working situation and a kid, or two, who is / are already in a good local school.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2021, 11:48:32 AM by Hippogriff »
Newbie
Posts: 19

Landlord - always learning

« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2021, 11:53:32 AM »

Quote
How do I tell someone that they aren't right for the property and that I don't want to accept their request for a viewing!!

The thing is to do is to set clear expectations from the start.

My approach...

I advertised and managed the letting process through OpenRent (and found it really easy, by the way).

I had over 70 enquires. These come in as messages via the OpenRent platform.

To make clear my assessment process I set up a reply within OpenRent which is sent automatically whenever an enquiry is received, as follows:

--------------------------------------------
Thank you for your enquiry.

The next steps are:

1. I will carefully consider all enquiries.

2. I will arrange a phone or WhatsApp call with enquirers who meet the initial criteria.

3. If the call goes well I will send a Tenancy Application Form to be completed.

4. I will arrange viewings for people who return a satisfactory Application Form.

5. I will obtain References and conduct Credit Checks prior to renting the property.

Many thanks
--------------------------------------------

Without being rude to anyone, this makes it clear that the landlord is in charge of the process and that applications will only progress to the next stage if the landlord decides that they are satisfactory.

This quickly dealt with time-wasters and no-hopers (e.g a family of three wanting to move into a studio flat).

For the 5 who got through to the phone call, I noted down what they said and, if I didn't want them to progress any further, I sent them a short message via OpenRent saying "Thank you for your enquiry but in this case there were more suitable applicants". There's no need to explain further unless you want to give them a helpful hint as to how they could improve their chances elsewhere, which I did in a couple of cases.

This left 3 to whom I sent application forms.

Of these, 2 were satisfactory and I invited them to a viewing. The other one had provided different information during the phone call and on the application form, so they got a "Thank you for your enquiry but in this case there were more suitable applicants".

Stay polite and matter of fact throughout. It's your property and you don't need to justify to anyone why you don't want a particular tenant.

« Last Edit: February 18, 2021, 11:56:43 AM by HandyMan »
Newbie
Posts: 3

I like property

« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2021, 01:25:34 PM »

Thank you for your response & advice Hippogriff.

Brilliant one liner, exactly what I'm looking for - " I currently have enough viewings to work through at this moment in time and I'lll be in touch if they don't work out"

Absolutely nail on the head, I don't want to ignore them as it is unprofessional. Using your one liner I can avoid going into too much detail whilst remaining professional.

I'm filtering so early on as have had quite a few viewing requests and have a lot of potentials in the diary already (appreciate they can seem great on paper / telephone and not in reality!). I've conducted enough job interviews in my time to be sat there thinking your CV was great and you were perfect over the phone, what went so wrong!

As mentioned before, some of the individuals requesting a viewing really cannot afford the rent & living costs based on their salaries, they are an absolute delight to talk to on the phone and tick all the other boxes. However these individuals are mostly brand new to renting and still living with parents. Very much excited by the prospect of moving out without thinking about the bigger financial picture. One individual declared a higher salary for me to then find out they are actually on substancially less, others shady about why they won't be able to provide references. There are more examples but I'll be here all day. Maybe I'm being extra cautious as I'm new to this, but that's on my head and I'm happy with that for the time being. However, there are also some individuals that are just chancers.

I only ask a set of very basic questions mostly with yes / no answers, nothing overly intrusive - employment status, salary, number of potential tenants, can they provide guarantors, current landlord & job references if required. I personally wouldn't hesitate to answer these questions, even if I was answering them multiple times a day for different landlords, it comes with the territory of looking for somewhere to live. I appreciate everyone is different, however I must say the majority of applicants have been great and had no issue going through these with me. It's just a handful I'm really not comfortable with and wanted to understand how to tackle and politely decline those few.

I myself am dyslexic so I let things like that slide. I know you're just using my terrible spelling and grammar as an example, but as this is a more casual forum I have entered this completely different to how I would approach a viewing request. You're ultimately selling yourself as an individual and a good tenant against all other potentials, you want to put your best foot forward.

Great tips there. Due to my other commitments I've blocked out a few days and have scheduled my viewings in those days, aiming for 2-3 in a day, 1 hour in-between to allow for any delays and a quick sanitise and so on. I hadn't even thought about a block viewing, definitely wouldn't be able to engage with individuals properly.

Anyway I digress, thank you for your reply. Such a simple and easy response, I can safely say I've been overthinking how to reply / tackle declining viewing requests! I'm going to be brutally honest, I'm nervous of offending anyone in this day and age!
Newbie
Posts: 3

I like property

« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2021, 01:37:44 PM »

Hi Handyman,

This is absolutely genius and so straight forward (kicking myself I didn't think of this, I'm usually so methodical!)

I'm following most of this process already which is handy to know I'm on the right path. However the way you've outlined your process in the automated response via OpenRent is fantastic! Most likely rather obvious to most landlords but being a brand new novice over here this advice is superb.

I want to make the process as easy and straight forward for both myself and the applicants. I've been trying to figure out the best way of going about this, on top of getting my head around all the other processes and legal requirements I need to cover being a landlord. Mind blown at times!

I appreciate over time it will become second nature and with each rental I'll learn then tweak how I do things, as with any job or anything in life. But for now this is great.

Thank you so much for sharing this, I'm sure this will help other too.
Global Moderator
Hero Member
Posts: 3859

I like lots of things

« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2021, 01:55:09 PM »

Block viewings are not cool at all. However, I don't think you need to allocate an hour in-between viewings either... there's nothing wrong for the people leaving to see someone arriving... and vice versa. Nothing wrong at all. There's a difference (albeit subtle) between being intentionally deceptive and just doing marketing. As I say, I schedule the 45 minute viewings one after the other and sometimes people are gone in 30. Then I have to amuse myself for a while. If they overrun... well, what are you going to do? If they overrun because they're really interested and asking lots of keen questions - amazing. If they overrun because they were late getting there - tell them you have someone else to attend to, as planned, and you have your gut-feeling forming and shaping all the time.
Global Moderator
Hero Member
Posts: 3859

I like lots of things

« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2021, 01:58:03 PM »

I've done six viewings in a day before. If your property is nice and fairly priced then you've being unlucky if you've not got something to proceed with by then.

Oh, and think about what you might want to do - if anything - about a Holding Deposit... but handle it carefully and ensure everyone knows what it's for and when it can be retained by you.
Pages: [1]
Print