We have used Apparent Properties for 3 years now to manage first one and now both of our properties in Barnes and have been delighted with the service that we have received. As overseas landlords you can become out of touch with your properties and the market rates for repairs very quickly. Isabel and Emelie have helped us so much in this context with sharing their experience and advice easily and openly. Previous managing agents have never been willing to answer questions such as "do you think that is a reasonable quotation?" or "which contractor would be best for this?" simply offering to get additional quotations whereas Isabel and Emelie as a smaller local agent have very strong relationships with their contractors and use local people that they know well. They have always been willing to say when they think a quotation is rather high or share other useful knowledge such as the quotation might be fine but the contractor is very busy therefore the work will take longer to complete. They are very fair to both landlord and tenant and act on issues very quickly and are completely on top of any potential problems before things can get worse - e.g. we have recently been told that our windows could do with being painted which was noticed when they were visiting another property behind ours. We had previously used a large national agent where we were just another landlord on file - we had problems with tenants as home visits were not conducted very thoroughly and the company had complete detachment from contractors (never actively searching for the most reliable or reasonable) to the extent that we ended up paying to have our entire roof replaced when the leak was actually coming from the upstairs toilet. The people looking after our property changed constantly due to a high turnover of staff so that we had no connection with the people we were dealing with. With Apparent Properties we have dealt with Isabel since the beginning and were introduced to Emelie when she started and continue to have regular contact with Isabel. The other thing that really makes a difference is the friendliness of the emails and contacts that we have - when you get an email saying that the boiler has packed up in the middle of winter it is nice to have someone apologize for the bad news rather than just issuing you with a bill! We feel like we have a partnership with them and now wouldn't trust our property with anyone else. Sincerely, T.
Mr & Mrs A-S
My wife and I engaged Apparent Properties as managing agents for both of our London properties nearly five years ago. One of them is a small investment flat. The other is our family home, temporarily let during our expatriate stage. Like any amateur landlords we engaged the agent with a degree of trepidation. However, any anxiety we had was quickly allayed (and remains so) by the team at Apparent. Emelie Sahlen manages our (much loved) family home with such care and attention to detail I sometimes have the impression she is at the house supporting the tenants several times a week. She seems to manage the many aspects of this large and expensive property and the tenants (CFO of a major French multinational and his family) with ease and great attention to detail. The tenants like her very much and find her tremendously responsive, supportive and authentic. And I am delighted to say that since we left our home in 2009 Emelie has, I think, been the only agent to manage the property. She knows it incredibly well and I love the consistency this gives us and the tenants. Isabel manages our flat. The fact that I hardly ever hear from her or get bothered with problems says everything about her ability to manage the property and the tenants quickly, professionally and autonomously. She also seems very much on top of things and I have no concerns that details will be overlooked or tenants left 'hanging'. Both sets of tenants keep renewing their lease, and I guess this is the ultimate measure of the success of these two managers. To top it all off we have got to know the owners of Apparent Properties, Chris and Claire Peskett (and their young children) and find them a hugely committed husband and wife team. They are deeply knowledgeable of the London real estate scene and more importantly, passionate about it. They are extremely down to earth and both they and their business are such a refreshing change from the cynical real-estate chains that populate the city. I would recommend them to anyone.
Mr J Bridge
"Isobel, Please let your prospective tenant know that I have been extremely happy with the service from Apparent Properties over the last 6yrs for both of my properties. It was the success you had done renting my flat for 2 years that made me choose you over Hamptons when I was trying to find a suitable letting agent for my 5 bed house in Barnes. For me, the decision came down to using an agent that had a detailed database of clients, close contact with all relocation agents (as these were the likely tenants - though most agents do have this), but also someone that was locally based and would take the time and care to manage the property with truly personal care (which I just don't think you always get from the big national chains). My decision was a difficult one as we live overseas but one which I would do again if I had to make the decision again.
R.R. SW14
Dear Isobel and the team at Apparent Properties, I wanted to thank you for the great work you've done in looking after our property in Barnes for the last 4 years. Even though we only planned to be in Switzerland for a year - we have now been away for 8 - it gives us such peace of mind to know that our property is in great hands. For the first 4 years we lived abroad, we put the property with a bigger, more established agent who did a dreadful job, so we know what can happen when a property's not taken care of. I had the impression they rarely (if ever!) visited the house - resulting in large bills to put it right between each tenancy. They also failed to get a rental in time for the school year, which cost us 6 months of income - despite us saying it was a family house and would, therefore, need people ready to be in by August. Plus, one of the tenants (who were paying well below market rent - just to 'get someone in for a few months') ripped out shelving, leaving huge holes in the wall - which the agent then made us pay for!! I had the feeling they had too many places to look after and they saw the 'management' as money for old rope - any work that needed doing cost a fortune. What a breath of fresh air - to meet the team at Apparent Properties - who charge lower commissions, but really take care of their properties like they are their own - from regular checks, and most importantly for owners living abroad - regular communication. There are always several quotes for any work needed, with trusted workmen whom they know well, who do not charge the earth. We have also had great tenants, who have respected and looked after our house, so I feel our 'nest egg' in London is safe, and will still be in good shape if and when we return! I would be happy to recommend Apparent Properties to any prospective landlord, as we can really leave the day to day management to them and trust their judgement. They are giving the other, often more established estate agents in the area, a run for their money as they deliver much more and cost a lot less. I wish them every success in growing their business."
Anna H – Switzerland
"Apparent Properties has been "Letting and Managing" my house in Barnes for a number of years. I would not hesitate in recommending the company and its individuals to any prospective landlord. They have always found reliable and responsible tenants who have paid higher rents than I've expected. Any issues that arise at the house are always dealt with extremely efficiently. I also find their monthly "management" reports both clear and concise and incredibly useful in tracking my property income and expenditure. I have previously used other larger agents, but never had the quality of service that Apparent offers.
Paul B