Careful Landlord & Tenant Selection Paid Dividends During Pandemic, Clan Gordon Tells CityLets Podcast

Supporting tenants through Covid, high-profile awards, and staff training were on the agenda when Clan Gordon directors Andrew and Jonathan Gordon spoke to Gillian Semmler for episode 48 of the Citylets podcast

The brothers, who established Edinburgh's leading lettings agency in 2007 after suffering poor service at the hands of other agents, chatted to Gillian for half an hour about the city's rental market and their experiences during the pandemic.

The Pandemic

Unlike many other agents, Clan Gordon didn't evict any tenants due to Covid, which they attributed to a solid foundation – strong working relationships with landlords, sound properties, and reliable tenants living in them.

During the first furlough, many tenants who were getting only 80% of their usual salary asked if they could reduce rent by 20% too. "The vast majority of landlords offered support before they were asked, and almost all were happy to write off that shortfall," the brothers told Gillian. 

Andrew and Jonathan said Clan Gordon was always extremely careful with their selection of landlords and tenants, which definitely had an impact during the pandemic and made the situation easier to manage. 

Edinburgh and Scotland's Best Letting Agent

Gillian asked the brothers about recent accolades in the 2021 all Agents Awards, based on customer reviews rather than self-nomination. 

Clan Gordon was also named Edinburgh and Scotland's best letting agent. We received an award for online advertising, judged using a 'mystery shopper' to anonymously assess staff performance during calls.

The Team

Clan Gordon has a team of 13 staff, all trained to or working towards the ARLA Propertymark Level 6. All are MARLA members too. 

"People tend to stay with us – we used to joke that the only people who had left were our property manager who went to be a Baptist minister, and then another went to train to join the police, and someone else went to train to be an architect, so people tend not to leave us once they've joined and we're really proud of that," they said.

When a requirement was introduced for anyone managing staff in the lettings sector to be trained to level 6, Clan Gordon went one step further and trained everyone to the high standard. The brothers said this had created a great team culture and a positive working environment, with staff undergoing training themselves and then training others in the team.

During the pandemic, staff were furloughed on rotation, so they stayed engaged with the business. Once restrictions were lifted, a new property administrator was recruited to offer admin support for all the additional work on the maintenance, inspections and safety certificate backlog created during lockdown. 

Edinburgh Property Market

The brothers discussed with Gillian the strong property market in Edinburgh, with record rents and a shortage of the most desirable properties as reported in the Citylets Q4 Rental Report for 2021.

They said high demand for one and two-bedroom properties had been exacerbated by students returning to studies and young people moving out of home following lockdown, but they had gained properties during the pandemic due to their excellent reputation and through Edinburgh landlords switching to them for an excellent property management service.

As Edinburgh's leading letting agent, Clan Gordon manages more than 500 properties across the city and has more than 15 years' experience in the lettings market. 

You can listen to the full podcast click here

If you are a landlord and would like to switch to a better letting agent who will take the hassle of managing your property off your plate, we're currently offering a £250 thank you to all new landlords who switch from their existing letting agent to Clan Gordon. Schedule a call and get peace of mind your property's in safe hands.


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