Choosing the right property company: independent vs. corporate

By 19th May 2017Landlords
choosing the right property company

Whether you’re a landlord letting a property or a tenant looking for a home, choosing the right property company can have a big impact on your search. There are two main types of company you might deal with – independent and corporate – and we’re going to look at the pros and cons of each to help you make the right choice.

For landlords

The aim of most landlords is to let properties quickly to reliable tenants. Fortunately, that is the aim of every property company too, so whether you choose independent or corporate will depend on what else you’re looking for.

The main advantage of corporate agencies is their size. These agencies typically have large networks that reach all over the country, and these connections used to make them the best option for landlords. However, now almost every agency, big or small, can plug into vast online services like Rightmove and Zoopla, which has really levelled the property playing field. Now the advantage of bigger companies is that they have hubs all over the country, with standardised procedures that apply to them all – fantastic if you want consistent letting in lots of different places.

Independent agencies, on the other hand, draw their strength from the fact that they are not spread widely. Small size usually indicates specialist knowledge, so if you’re a landlord based in one area then an independent agency could offer you a wealth of local experience to help you let your property sooner. What’s more, independent companies deal with fewer landlords than large corporates, meaning that they can dedicate more time to customer service, and they can also pass on the savings from their lower operating costs to you, the landlord.

If you’re looking for property management (i.e. having the agency take care of the property after it has been let), you might think you are limited to choosing a larger agency, but many independents offer property management too. For example, Gough Quarters has a comprehensive Portfolio Management service, so be sure to check this with local agencies before you decide.

choosing the right property companyFor tenants

Moving home is stressful enough, so it’s important to work with an agency that will give you exactly what you need. Both independent and corporate agencies want to help you find the perfect home, so your choice will depend on what else you think will make the move easier for you.

An advantage of corporate agencies is that they typically have greater resources to draw on. For example, large companies will be able to invest more in creating cutting-edge websites, taking high-quality property photos, and advertising widely to cater to everybody’s needs. If you want the power of a large agency behind your search for a home, as well as standardised procedures to follow should any problems arise, then a corporate company could be right for you.

Independent agencies, on the other hand, do not cater to such a wide audience, and that means they can really focus on what they’re best at. An independent agency will have a small, dedicated team with plenty of local knowledge to help you in your search, and they’ll also be less likely to talk to you in confusing management speak. Even better, independent companies’ websites will usually have a phone number that can connect you to a person straightaway, and it is this personal service that makes them so appealing.

Whichever option you choose, finding the right property company will make your letting experience so much better.


Are you looking for an independent property company in Bristol? Contact Gough Quarters today to find out more.

Image sources:
All images courtesy of Pixabay

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