Keywest was initially set up with the sole intention of improving the service provided to landlords when letting a property through a letting agent. We’ve been there and done it ourselves, so we understand what it’s like to be a landlord.
We aim to provide exceptional levels of service to our clients, delivering efficient, stress-free property management that keeps you informed and puts you in control.
As an established Leicester letting agent, operating two offices in Leicester, we have extensive, up-to-date knowledge of the local rental market ensuring our landlords achieve the best return on their property.
Providing a fully managed service
We help you achieve the best income from your rental property by not only achieving current market rates for rent, but also by ensuring we attract the right tenants and keep the property occupied. Keywest offer a full property management service, which allows us to fully support landlords in the care and management of their properties. Simply hand us a set of keys to your property and we’ll do the rest for you.
We will make sure we that select reliable tenants, your rent is paid on time, the property is well looked after, and you don’t experience any undue stress! Our comprehensive service includes the following:
A Keywest assessor will visit your house to advise you on the rental value of your property. During this visit we will give you a perspective of the current rental market in your area. We will also give you advice on how best to achieve the maximum rental for your property.
Advertise and market your property:
We take a modern, proactive approach to marketing and advertising to get information on your rental out to as many people as possible. We will take professional photographs and produce full colour details that will be displayed in our office window.
We will also promote your property on our own website, on national property portals, as well as work proactively to promote your property via social media channels. We also regularly advertise in local and regional newspapers, such as Leicester Mercury, because we know that if you have no tenants, you’re making a loss. Our performance in finding new tenants quickly is second to none.
Match suitable tenants to your property:
Once instructed to manage your property, we will match the most suitable prospective tenants to your needs. Keywest receives many inquiries on a daily basis from people wishing to view properties, ensuring your property will not lie empty for very long. We have an extensive database of people searching for rental accommodation, and we speak to new candidates every day.
We will accompany prospective tenants to view the property, so that you don’t have to. You will receive feedback on all visits until the property is successfully let.
Credit checks, employers and previous landlords references:
For your protection, we will conduct credit checks, speak to employers and gain references from previous landlords to reduce the risk when finding a new tenant. To provide the most accurate and detailed referencing available, we enlist the services of Landlord Secure, a company who specialise in this area. We operate a policy for students that requires a guarantor (usually their parents) to underwrite the full rent for the term of the tenancy. This means that the guarantor is legally responsible to cover any unpaid rent, meaning you aren’t left out of pocket.
Draw up tenancy agreements:
Keywest provide legally binding tenancy agreements. The prospective tenant will have to pay one month’s rent in advance, and the equivalent of one month’s rent as deposit before moving in to the house. We issue a tenancy agreement and can tailor this to suit your needs (subject to those needs being within what is deemed as a fair and legal term). The tenancy agreement covers both the landlord’s and tenant’s rights and is a fair means to establish a healthy working relationship, while providing the landlord strict protection against late payment of rent, or abuse of the property.
Compile comprehensive inventory:
To protect your property and contents, Keywest draws up a full inventory of all items in the property belonging to the landlord. The condition of each item is noted and the inventory is then agreed and signed by the tenant. The inventory addresses cleanliness, décor, furniture, white goods, carpets and curtains. This prevents any disputes regarding damage at the end of the tenancy.
Inform council tax and utility companies of new tenants:
To prevent the nuisance of letters demanding council tax and payment for unpaid utility bills left by previous tenants, Keywest provides the details of any new tenants to Leicester City Council and Severn Trent Water. We set up tenants on gas and electricity contracts at the start of their tenancy.
Collect rent and promptly pay landlords:
Keywest collects all rent payments and passes on the correct amount to you promptly. Unlike many agents, we have an automated system that flags up any late rent. We will contact any tenants that are late paying rent and request immediate payment. We realise that it is very important for you to receive your rent on time. Keywest endeavours to ensure that each tenant signs up to a bank standing order agreement, prompting quick and efficient payment. Any late payment of rent is immediately detected and pursued. While tenants occasionally experience unforeseen personal circumstances, we work with them to ensure rental arrears are soon recovered, putting into place repayment schedules and agreements. We will keep you informed about any irregular situation that arises until it is resolved.
To ensure that your tenant is looking after your property we carry out regular inspections and compare it to your inventory. This helps to ensure the diligent maintenance of your property and alert us to any potential problems at an early stage.
Assistance and advice with problem tenants:
It is a reality that despite references and credit checks, occasionally landlords can be unfortunate enough to have problem tenants. If this were to happen, Keywest will endeavour to resolve any problems on your behalf. If we are still unable to conclude the matter we will advise you on the best course of action to take. We do offer tenants a period of time in which to repay arrears. Should it be necessary, we can offer advice and assist in eviction. Naturally, should any further legal advice be required we have a solicitor that can help you.
Arrange for tradesmen:
Should the property or your appliances require any maintenance or repairs we will inform you immediately. Keywest will arrange for tradesmen to provide a quote, or alternatively, you can arrange for the work to be carried out yourself. If the repair is an emergency and we cannot contact you, we will proceed with the minimum amount of work required to prevent endangering the property or the tenants. Keywest have experienced tradesmen who can provide the following services and more:
Regular communication with landlords:
While we manage your property, we understand that you need to be kept informed of any matters pertaining to it. Keywest will let you know when your Gas Safety Certificate and any other ongoing legislative certification inspections are due. With your permission, we carry out these inspections and automatically deduct the cost of the work from your next months rent. We will also contact you and your tenants at least one month before your tenancy agreement ends to see if the arrangement is to continue. If you both wish to continue we will draw up new contracts for a small administration charge. If the tenants wish to leave after the tenancy period we will market your property at the earliest opportunity to avoid a vacant period of tenancy.
Final inspection before release of deposits:
On the date (or shortly after) that tenants are due to leave, a final inspection of the property is carried out and this is compared to the original inventory to ensure that the property and landlord’s goods are left in the same condition (minus fair wear and tear). Any damage caused by the tenant will be reported to you and the appropriate funds deducted from the tenants deposit before being returned.