The principal of Lex Allan Lettings was reminiscing last week about the changing face of residential lettings and how the lettings arena is a very different place from that which existed in the early 1990s when Lex Allan first set up their business.

Lex Allan commented:-

“In the early 1990s residential lettings was very much perceived to be the poor man’s end to the market with the majority of estate agents believing that they were above dealing with tenants who were thought to come from the lower socio-economic strata of the population. At Lex Allan we believed this to be a complete nonsense and we strove to offer a service to landlords and tenants which was commensurate with that being provided to vendors and purchasers. Both landlords and tenants responded well not only to the service we provided but also the marketing platform that Lex Allan Lettings delivered. We were the first agent locally to present full colour whole page adverts for properties to let within the local newspapers (Express and Star and the Stourbridge News) and one of the first agents in the entire West Midlands to have website!!

Lex Allan became the go to agent for a number of corporate and independent estate agents who were determined, at that time, not to provide a residential lettings service (how this has all changed now!) and at one stage we were servicing residential lettings enquiries from both landlords and tenants from 64 estate agency offices across the West Midlands. From our Stourbridge office we handled enquiries from Tamworth and Lichfield in the North down to Redditch and Stratford in the South.

Our business grew exponentially and within 18 months we were the largest local letting agent and one of the top three residential letting agents in the West Midlands.

We currently oversee a portfolio in excess of a thousand houses and flats, and throughout our 28 years in the business we have developed a reputation of being THE ‘go to’ specialist agents in the residential lettings arena.

Over the last 10 years residential lettings has become an essential ‘add on’ for both corporate and independent estate agents and provides them with ancillary income to negate the impact imposed upon estate agencies by fluctuations in the house selling market place.

In the early noughties ‘buy to let’ investors entered the market place in their droves and have habitually bought houses up to £150,000 which have delivered yields ranging from 5-8%. On top of the net rental yields the majority of our ‘buy to let’ investors have enjoyed the benefit of a significant capital value uplift (particularly on houses) which means that these investments have significantly outstripped returns that one could achieve from other investment options.

In recent years the ‘buy to let’ momentum has calmed with net yields delivering an habitual return of circa 5% however canny investors are still buying as they believe their investment will deliver good long term growth as pressure on the lower end of the market place (now up to £200,000) will continue to mount as a growing number of twenty and thirty something’s save rigorously for deposits to position themselves in that market sector as buyers.

This latter factor combined with the incredibly low interest rates that are being offered to entice both first time buyers and ‘buy to let’ investors means we are likely to see a resurgence in ‘buy to let’ activity in a post Brexit environment when stability and confidence once again prevail.’’

For more information about today’s Lettings Department call 01384 442464 or e-mail