Landlords: The best online property companies


There are a few options to choose from when it comes to lettings agents in Romford or another area you are looking to rent your property in.

For example, the customer is blessed nowadays as you have a mixed bag between the online ‘cost saving’ service vs the high street option. However, there are so many to choose from in terms of service, that it is difficult to know what the right option is for you and what you want.

In a nutshell, with the online model you are dealing with a software. With the high street agency, the software is a human (hopefully an expert one) and that is truly what you are paying for.

Some landlords love to be hands-on and have the time to take up the bulk of the listing dramas, they handle their tenant introduction and the move-in process themselves. I would advise using the online model for landlords that want to do it themselves.

Firstly, the landlord is in the drivers seat, they have an element of control throughout whole the process. They have access to online property portals, handle the leads themselves and conduct the viewing process. My advice is if you are the type of landlord to always keep yourself up to date with the (ever-changing) UK property legislation, news, how-to-rent booklets and landlord license law this is the best route for you.

My advice to this type of landlord is to subscribe to property or landlord alert pages, such as:

Latest Landlord News – Landlord Guides – Landlord Today


NRLA – The Home For Landlords

The NRLA is a brilliant membership to sign up to, they give discounts and loyalty bonuses to landlords, plus they are a wealth of information for private landlords who wish to run the business themselves and not choose an agent.

On the other side of the spectrum, we have the high street option. These are the agencies that handle the whole process including the property portals, leads, picking the tenants via the paperwork collection and dealing with the whole situation. This may be the more expensive option, but you gain the benefit of having complete peace of mind.

Your decision truly depends on what type of landlord you are and if you want the grief of picking your own tenant via the rental process.

Below I am going to go through what you receive with the online model vs the high street agency human model. I am not advocating for either and I put it down to what type of landlord you are and what service you value the most.

The best online models to choose from: (at the time of writing this blog)

Mashroom – Pricing | Mashroom

Mashroom seems like a great option. I will raise question about the customer service, as the Trustpilot review are currently not a 5-stars. They stand at 4.4 stars and a few people have moaned about the support. However, the offer of free marketing on both Rightmove and Zoopla makes them a great option as private landlords cannot advertise on these portals themselves.

They also give you options (which is their business model and how they make their money).

Photos only – £99
Photos & floorplan is £120.
EPC – £70
Gas Safety – £79
EICR – £225
Tenant Referencing – £15 each tenant
Rent Protection Insurance – £299 Per Year

They offer a rent collection service and tenancy setup service which would probably cost more money too, but this in my opinion is well worth a look for the landlord who wants to be hands-on.

Open Rent – Pricing – The Online Letting Agent with No Hidden Fees | OpenRent

Probably the most famous for hands-on landlords, open rent has been on the scene for a number of years and it’s because our model works. They have received great reviews online at 4.5/5, and the majority of the bad reviews seem to be from tenants and not landlords.

In my opinion, reviews don’t lie about a companies service, especially 2,500 reviews. You do get what you pay for though and as mentioned above, you need to be a hands-on landlord for this type of service to work.

Free Service – You receive the Open Rent website advertising and viewing organiser, which is a waste of time in my opinion, you need to pay to get this service to work properly.

£29 Option – 3 Months Advertising on Rightmove & Zoopla, which is great, in my personal experience, if you haven’t let your property by this period then the problem is either you, the price or the condition and you probably need a high street agent because you are doing it wrong.

£49 – All the above plus digital contract signing, initial rent collection and passing plus deposit registration. Not a bad service for under £50.

EICR – From £69 (I would be nervous about the contractors here because that is very cheap)
Gas Safety – £45
Referencing – £20 Per Tenant
Pro Photos & Floorplan – £104
Accompanied Viewings – From £42
Rent Protection Insurance – From £207
Rent Collection – £10

Again, a really good option for landlords, tried and tested.

I would dig down a bit deeper the tenant referencing service, how thorough this is and if it is compliant with the rent protection.

I would be nervous about the accompanied viewings because at this price, the agent in question may not have the necessary knowledge or care for the property, so if the landlord is out of the area, then I would be cautious and know what I am getting into.

Overall, a great low-cost package.

99 Home – Online Letting Agents Nationwide | Let Property from Just £29 (

A great alternative because they offer more than the other two. The reviews online are also great and if you are a landlord that wants to do it yourself or have the in-between route, then these are your guys.

Starting from £0.00 but no property portal advertising apart from their own website, which I don’t think accounts for much, any tenant who knows what they are doing wants to view the portals where all the properties are located such as Rightmove and Zoopla.

However, the next level up is: £29 which includes the portals such as Zoopla and, On the Market, but NOT Rightmove, sorting out the viewing times and digital contract signing.

Next level is: £35 paid upon a successful let. This includes 1 tenant reference, deposit registration and holding deposit collection. It also includes a negotiation tool, rent reminder and statement too. You must pay £50 extra if you want Rightmove advertising and £20 for rent collection.

The next level up is: £55 per month.

All the above plus:

*To Let Board
*Zoopla Premium Listing
*Tenancy Renewal at £49
*Rent Protection Insurance – £280

Who is best?

In my humble opinion as an agent that has been doing for over 15 years, I would say that either Mashroom or Open Rent are both worth it for what you receive for the money.

Mashroom has free Rightmove and Zoopla advertising, which is there are no catches to their service, and it is truly free without having to purchase bolt on’s then I think that is a great deal and hard to not turn down.

Open Rent is tried and tested; you know what you are receiving.

I think customer service has a lot to be answered for with both models, if you can speak with someone quite easily, then this would be important to me.

However, if you are a private landlord that wants that element of control and doesn’t want to pay a letting agencies fees for the work that they do, then these are the best routes to go down in my opinion.

Please check my blog out: What do I receive from using a Letting Agent instead of doing it myself?

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