Edinburgh native Hannah started at Clan Gordon five years ago after a stint at another property firm in the city.
She started out as a lettings administrator, moving into compliance and property management and then, as she describes it, she ‘fell into’ her current position. Hannah became a key member of the team during the Covid pandemic when she quickly adapted to cover multiple areas of the business after some colleagues were furloughed.
She said: “Jumping from department to department worked out well because it means you get an understanding of how the whole business works rather than just a part of it. It definitely helps with new business.”
Hannah started in the business development role just as Covid struck, and she has been incredibly busy dealing with new enquiries from landlords ever since.
What Hannah’s role involves
Hannah is the first point of contact for any new clients when it comes to getting their property ready, answering any questions, dealing with the details and then trying to find them the best possible tenant for their property.
Hannah remains the landlord’s first point of contact until the first tenant moves in and then she hands over responsibility to a dedicated property manager.
Her work is almost exclusively with landlords of properties in Edinburgh but she does have occasional contact with tenants – when a landlord switches from another letting agency for example, it’s Hannah who introduces Clan Gordon to the new tenants, explaining what it is we do before handing over to a property manager.
She can be dealing with anything up to 30 landlords at a time – that’s existing landlords, new inquiries and the day-to-day admin to prepare properties and find the very best tenants for them.
From property inspections to marketing materials
A typical day can see Hannah liaising with landlords, performing first inspections on properties, taking marketing pictures, meeting new clients face to face or liaising with contractors on jobs such as bathroom renovations to make sure they’re completed on time.
It’s a busy role and it keeps getting busier as Clan Gordon’s positive Google reviews push landlords and tenants in our direction.
The other factor making Hannah’s life busier is the change to the laws on short-term rentals in Scotland. From October 2023, it became necessary for new hosts to apply for a short-term let licence before accepting bookings or receiving guests. The expense and insecurity of that process has led to a lot of short-term landlords either selling up or moving to long-term rentals which greatly increased Hannah’s workload.
Landlords come to Hannah from different routes. Some of them become accidental landlords by family passing away or moving to a bigger home with their partner, others are investors looking to buy. Hannah estimates that almost half the new landlords coming to Clan Gordon are moving overseas for a couple of years and at least 20% are switching from other agents.
Hassle-free property management in Edinburgh
Typically, they are looking for Clan Gordon’s hassle-free fully managed service. We let them know what needs to be done before the property can be let, suggest improvements to attract the best tenants, give them the valuation of the property and have an open discussion about what they are looking for. Once advertised we’ll ensure the very best potential tenants get to see the property and present the landlord with good information about applicants so they can make an informed decision.
Hannah also regularly carries out the initial inspection on a property before tenants move in for the first time. For fully managed clients, we go in twice a year to inspect the property and make sure everything is working. We do all the legwork in terms of renewing safety certificates and ensuring the property stays compliant.
We arrange a full colour inventory and check tenants in and out so if there are any deposit disputes, our property managers will deal with that appropriately, keeping the landlord up to date on costs and property condition.
Looking out for tenants as well as landlords
Hannah describes Covid as a big learning curve for Clan Gordon as tenants saw their pay cut, their jobs furloughed and, in some cases, were made redundant.
She said: “When tenants do fall into arrears, we have a compassionate process in place, and it centres around good communication between us and the tenant. If people have lost their job but they’re going to interviews, they forecast they’ll be back in work in a couple of months, we’ll relay that to the landlord and keep that dialogue open.”
In the rare event we have to give the tenant notice to leave, Clan Gordon will handle that process on behalf of the landlord.
“When a landlord is returning to their property, Clan Gordon will handle the notice period for the tenant, clean the property, update utilities and council tax and, providing they’ve been a good tenant, we’ll try to put them in another of our properties – we want good tenants in our properties, as well as good landlords.”
Quickfire Q&A With Hannah.
“We offer a uniquely personal service. And we’ve implemented lots of things throughout the company to make sure everyone’s up to date with what’s going on.
“So, when I bring on a new property, all staff get an email to say ‘this is our new property, here’s everything you need to know about it, here’s a virtual tour of the property’. That means if the landlord phones in but the property manager is out, someone can answer the question immediately.”
Get peace of mind your property is in safe hands
Our team are qualified and experienced property management professionals and we’re among just a handful of Edinburgh letting agents with in-house chartered surveyors. Our business is focused solely on lettings and we’re regulated by ARLA (Association of Residential Letting Agents) Propertymark and RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors).