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Western Lettings Blog

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  • Jack Gallagher
  • December 02, 2020 11:56:36 AM
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A Little About Us

Established in 2008, Western Lettings is an independent, award-winning letting agents in Glasgow. We focus entirely on property letting and property management in order to provide the best possible service in these areas. We are highly accredited ((ARLA, TPOS, SAL, LAS, CLA) and have recently been awarded Investors in People Gold Accreditation, which is the highest level. We are the first letting agent in Scotland to achieve this and believe it demonstrates our high level of commitment to our staff and our clear focus on continuous improvement and customer service.

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Covid-19 Update 06/01/21

In Glasgow, we’re now in lockdown until at least the end of January.  However, the current guidelines permit house moves and related activity to take place.  This includes property viewings. Hopefully, it will all be over soon.  In the meantime, […] The post Covid-19 Update 06/01/21 appeared first on Western...

In Glasgow, we’re now in lockdown until at least the end of January.  However, the current guidelines permit house moves and related activity to take place.  This includes property viewings.

Hopefully, it will all be over soon.  In the meantime, here’s how we’re currently operating.

Viewings

As has been the case for many months now, we’re relying as much as possible on virtual tours and floorplans to market properties to prospective tenants.  Most prospective tenants are happy to proceed on this basis.  When an applicant has completed satisfactory referencing, we will normally carry out an accompanied socially distanced viewing while the property is vacant.

Moving In

Aside from an accompanied viewing following referencing, all our applicant processing takes place online.  This includes application, referencing and digital signing of lease and inventory.  Keys are collected from outside our office on the day of the check-in.  One of our team will visit the property shortly before the handover to do a final check and take meter readings.

Maintenance

Contractors will normally visit properties only for essential maintenance.  Out of hours cover is fully operational.

Our Office

Most of our team are working from home, however there will always be at least one person at the office during working hours.  Calls and emails are being handled as normal.

New Clients

We can take on new properties and market them as normal.  Just call or email and we’ll send a link to register your property details.  If required, we can do a valuation by video call.

 

If you would like any further help or information please contact us or give us a call on 0141 357 0436

The post Covid-19 Update 06/01/21 appeared first on Western Lettings.


Western Lettings – Our Journey to Carbon Neutral

Western Lettings is absolutely delighted to announce that we have just been assessed as a carbon neutral organisation. We have spent the last few months working with Carbon Footprint towards this goal. We believe we are currently the only letting […] The post Western Lettings – Our Journey to Carbon Neutral appeared first on Western...

Western Lettings is absolutely delighted to announce that we have just been assessed as a carbon neutral organisation. We have spent the last few months working with Carbon Footprint towards this goal. We believe we are currently the only letting agency /estate agents in Scotland to hold this certification.

What is carbon neutrality?

Carbon neutrality refers to achieving net zero carbon dioxide emissions. This can be done by balancing carbon dioxide emissions (or other greenhouse gases) with the removal of carbon dioxide or carbon offsetting. Carbon offsetting is a way of compensating for your greenhouse gas emissions by funding schemes designed to reduce future emissions e.g. reforestation or clean energy projects.

Why is carbon neutrality important?

Climate change is caused by increasing amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases being pumped into the atmosphere. The primary cause of CO2 emissions is the burning of fossil fuels e.g. coal, natural gas and oil. Finding ways to reduce or offset our CO2 emissions is vitally important to try and reduce the acceleration of climate change.

In fact, climate change is now recognised as a significant global threat and even locally represents the single greatest threat to Scotland’s habitats. In 2021 Glasgow is set to host COP26 (UN Climate Change Conference) with more than 200 world leaders in attendance. In addition, the Scottish government has set itself a legally-binding target to cut greenhouse gas emissions in Scotland to net zero by 2045.

How we achieved carbon neutrality

Carbon Footprint spent a couple of months with us, gathering lots of data on our CO2 emissions over the previous year. All areas of our business were included. This was followed by a detailed analysis to pinpoint where we were generating the most CO2. We discovered that over 65% of our carbon emissions were coming from our company cars! The next biggest contributor was, less surprisingly, our on-site electricity and gas utilities. At the end of the assessment process, we were delighted to achieve the result we had hoped for – carbon neutral status!

Our next steps

Although we are delighted to have achieved carbon neutrality we are not stopping there. We are committed to doing even more to reduce our carbon emissions.

  • We currently have two electric vehicles (EVs) and two petrol vehicles. We have also installed two electric car charging points on-site. We plan to have all electric company cars from mid 2021.
  • We are reducing our energy consumption and moving to renewable energy suppliers
  • As well as being almost completely paperless we are currently migrating to digital notebooks
  • We are increasing our recycling, particularly in areas where waste prevention is not possible
  • We will continue to offset our greenhouse gas emissions by funding projects which provide sustainable solutions to climate change

 

Western Lettings is a highly accredited letting agency in Glasgow specialising in property letting and property management.  If you want to find out more about our services, please get in touch or give us a call on 0141 357 0436

The post Western Lettings – Our Journey to Carbon Neutral appeared first on Western Lettings.


Lets Talk Podcast with Jack Gallagher

In this short podcast, Jack Gallagher, founder of Western Lettings, chats to Gillian Semmler about his company’s ‘highly commended’ award at this year’s Scottish Home Awards. He also chats about starting his letting agents in 2008 with the motto “do […] The post Lets Talk Podcast with Jack Gallagher appeared first on Western...

In this short podcast, Jack Gallagher, founder of Western Lettings, chats to Gillian Semmler about his company’s ‘highly commended’ award at this year’s Scottish Home Awards. He also chats about starting his letting agents in 2008 with the motto “do one thing well.” He believes that taking this approach and concentrating solely on providing good quality tailored services for landlords and tenants is the reason for Western Lettings continued success.

Multi Award Winning Letting Agents

Western Lettings is a multi award winning letting agent in Glasgow. Jack chats about some of his recent industry awards including the Negotiator Awards and the ESTAs. He is particularly proud of being the first letting agent in Scotland to achieve the prestigious Investors in People GOLD Accreditation (IIP).

Glasgow Lettings Market and the Pandemic

Jack also chats to Gillian about the effect the pandemic has had on the Glasgow letting market. He discusses whether he has seen any change in the types of properties that private renters in Glasgow are looking for. He also gives his predictions on how the lettings market will perform in the early part of 2021.

 

The post Lets Talk Podcast with Jack Gallagher appeared first on Western Lettings.


Residential Letting Team of the Year – Highly Commended

Western Lettings is thrilled to announce that we have been awarded ‘Highly Commended’ in the category ‘Residential Letting Team of the Year’ at this year’s Scottish Home Awards. We are extremely proud of this achievement, particularly as we were short-listed […] The post Residential Letting Team of the Year – Highly Commended appeared first on Western...

Western Lettings is thrilled to announce that we have been awarded ‘Highly Commended’ in the category ‘Residential Letting Team of the Year’ at this year’s Scottish Home Awards. We are extremely proud of this achievement, particularly as we were short-listed against some very stiff competition in the letting agents industry.

As you would expect, the format of this year’s event was slightly different from previous ones. The ceremony was broadcast live from the ballroom at Glasgow’s DoubleTree by Hilton with teams of letting agents joining in virtually from home. The prestigious annual event arranged by KD Media was superbly hosted this year by Glasgow comedian Des Clarke. Des kept us all highly entertained throughout the ceremony as well as doing the important task of presenting the awards and interviewing the winners.

This is the third year the award ‘Residential Letting Team of the Year’ has been sponsored by Citylets, with this year seeing the highest ever number of entries. The award ‘Residential Letting Team of the Year’ was won by our friends in Edinburgh, Umega Lettings. Western Lettings received a special award of ‘Highly Commended’. We feel very honoured and humbled to have achieved this commendation, particularly with the standard of nominations being so high.

Commenting on the award, Jack Gallagher (Director of Western Lettings) said, “Our team really enjoyed the virtual awards ceremony, so many thanks to all at KD Media for pulling it off.  We were all very pleased to receive the ‘highly commended’ award with such a star-studded short-list.”

Without a doubt, 2020 has been a very difficult year for many businesses. An award like this is important because it acknowledges all the hard work, extra effort and professional services provided by letting agents throughout the country. Western Lettings couldn’t be more proud to be part of this year’s event and to win this fabulous commendation.

 

Western Lettings is a multi-award winning letting agents in Glasgow. Please get in touch if you would like more information about our property letting and property management services.

The post Residential Letting Team of the Year – Highly Commended appeared first on Western Lettings.


Has Covid-19 Changed What We Want From Our Homes?

The Central Belt is back under tight local lockdown restrictions.  With working from home recommended and most hospitality shut or severely restricted, we are once again spending most of our time confined to our flats and houses. But has the […] The post Has Covid-19 Changed What We Want From Our Homes? appeared first on Western...

The Central Belt is back under tight local lockdown restrictions.  With working from home recommended and most hospitality shut or severely restricted, we are once again spending most of our time confined to our flats and houses. But has the way we are currently forced to live changed how we feel about our homes? As a leading letting agent in Glasgow, we are in a good position to spot changes in the property rental market. We see first-hand the kinds of properties that are attracting the most attention.

More Space

The underlying message, not surprisingly, seems to be that buyers and renters want more space. This may not be a permanent change, but coronavirus is certainly making many people think about how and where they work and live.

With city-centre accommodation tending to be less spacious, it is not surprising that Rightmove, the UK property website, has reported a significant rise in the number of people searching for homes further from town and city centres. Popular properties tend to come with larger gardens and space for a home office.

In addition, many of us have come round to the conclusion that we can work very effectively from home. More importantly, many of our employers are in agreement. With no detriment to business and individuals saving time and money on the commute into the office, this seems like a win/win scenario. This is already having an influence on the market. The switch to working from home, even on a part-time basis, is driving the desire for additional space.

What all this means is that in many cases the home is no longer considered a refuge from work. For many, it is doubling up as an office space, a classroom, or even a gym! With the desire to have a separate room or adequate space for these new activities, “space, space, space” is becoming the new mantra similar to the ever-popular, “location, location, location”.

Location

Many potential buyers and renters are embracing the idea of a new way of living. However, despite an increase in people searching for homes further from city centres and towns, there is still a desire with a significant part of the rental population to be close to city centre attractions. Alongside this however, is the desire to find locations close to outside green space. The health and wellbeing benefits of having easy access to parks, playgrounds, gardens etc. during this pandemic, have been well documented.

Property Type

With limited access to restaurants and cafes, home cooking has become the norm. Having an open-plan living and kitchen area at the heart of a property is becoming increasingly popular and will remain a design staple throughout this pandemic and probably beyond. As you would expect, homes with gardens, balconies, terraces and private roof decks, which are already prized amenities for any prospective buyer, have become even more in demand in recent months.

Responsive Letting Agents

With reference to the rental market, a good letting agent has always been appreciated by both landlords and tenants. However, with all of us forced to spend a lot more time indoors, a property manager who can be relied on to act quickly when a shower breaks or a lock sticks can greatly reduce the stress and anxiety felt during these difficult times. Similarly, a fast response to emails or phone calls can help keep the blood pressure down as we all struggle to manage the effects of this pandemic. With everything else that is worrying us at this time, it helps to know that there is a safe pair of hands looking after your property and tenants.

 

Western Lettings is a multi-award winning letting agents in Glasgow. Please get in touch if you would like more information about our property letting and property management services.

The post Has Covid-19 Changed What We Want From Our Homes? appeared first on Western Lettings.


COVID-19: Latest Information for Landlords and Tenants in Glasgow

COVID 19 has had a big impact on the Glasgow rental property market. One of the main issues for landlords and letting agents at the start of lockdown was the pausing of ‘in person’ property viewings. Fortunately, we were already […] The post COVID-19: Latest Information for Landlords and Tenants in Glasgow appeared first on Western...

COVID 19 has had a big impact on the Glasgow rental property market. One of the main issues for landlords and letting agents at the start of lockdown was the pausing of ‘in person’ property viewings. Fortunately, we were already set up to market all our new properties with virtual tours, as part of our normal service. Even so, with most of our staff now working from home we had to make a number of other changes to our working practices. We updated our website with extra guidance for landlords and tenants and also increased the number of key processes that could be carried out online.

However, since those early days, many restrictions have eased. Significantly, the Scottish Government announced that house moves could resume from 29th June. Then on the 9th July 2020 they published more specific guidance for the rental sector which contained key information for landlords and tenants.

Key Points

In Person Viewings

    • ‘In person’ property viewings are now permitted. However, virtual viewing should still be the preferred choice for first viewings. In person viewings should only take place where there is no other alternative and there is a strong likelihood of renting.
    • Anyone who does view a property must comply with the latest Scottish Governments guidelines on physical distancing and the use of face masks.
    • ‘In person’ viewings are not allowed in properties with tenants who are either showing COVID symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate.

Between Tenancies

    • Where possible repairs, gas and electricals safety checks and EPCs should be carried out in the period between an old tenant moving out and a new tenant moving in.
    • If possible, letting agents should consider obtaining landlord and tenant consent for inventory appointments to occur before a tenant moves in or after a tenant moves out.
    • Properties should be deep cleaned in the period between new tenancies

Repairs & Health & Safety Inspections

    • As mentioned, the preferred option is to carry out repairs, gas and electrical safety checks etc. between tenancies or when the property is unoccupied. When this is not possible, measures should be in place to ensure physical distancing is maintained e.g. residents keep to another room etc.
    • Landlords should make every effort to comply with electrical and gas safety requirements. Where a tenant has COVID symptoms or is self-isolating and work cannot be carried out, landlords will not be in breach so long as they can show that they have taken reasonable steps to comply.
    • Work should not go ahead if either the contractor of any of the tenants are showing symptoms of COVID or are self- isolating
    • Any tradespeople required to entering people’s homes must observe social distancing, use appropriate and proportionate protective equipment, and follow the guidance on sanitation.

 

Although it is clear that restrictions in Scotland have eased, the situation remains very fragile. In fact, Glasgow is currently under a ‘local lockdown’ with additional restrictions on who can enter a household. For now, the guidelines for tenanted properties are not affected, but this could change. The local restrictions are set to be in place for an initial 2 week period but the Scottish Government has not ruled out further action if it believes additional measures are required. Unfortunately, it seems likely that the impact of COVID 19 will be with us for some time to come.

Western Lettings is a highly accredited letting agency in Glasgow specialising in property letting and property management.  If you want to find out more about our services, please get in touch or give us a call on 0141 357 0436

The post COVID-19: Latest Information for Landlords and Tenants in Glasgow appeared first on Western Lettings.


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