3 ways void utility management can boost your agency's bottom line

3 November 2021

Agents that use a supplier to offer void management can take control of their agency's bottom line. Here's Rik Smith, resident energy expert and Head of Tenancy Services at Goodlord, to explain how.

However well managed a property is, your landlords are likely to see a void period between tenants. Your agency may offer your landlords a void management service, managing their utility switching process, but this is time-consuming to do manually. There are ways to make it a better experience for your agency's administrators and landlords, while improving your agency's bottom line - even while the energy crisis is ongoing.

Avoid unexpected bills

Energy costs are going up, whatever supplier your landlord or tenant uses. Over the winter, your landlord may choose to leave the heating on low to prevent any burst pipes during a void period and you don't want an estimated bill which assumes the property is occupied and therefore being heated at a higher temperature. It's important to give accurate meter readings to reduce the cost to both you and your landlords during a void period, ensuring that the bills are accurate and in the right name.

If you were to use a utility switching and void management provider, such as Goodlord, you can easily add those meter readings onto the Goodlord platform. Rather than providing meter readings to 30 different energy suppliers, across all of your landlords, you can simplify that process with one utility switching provider, helping your team free up some time to focus on other areas of the business.

Earn your agency commission

With a utility switching and void management service, you can benefit from direct revenue as well as those cost savings. Most utility switching providers will offer a commission for each successful utility switch, meaning that not only can you sit back and let that provider take care of the time-consuming admin side of the process, you can create a new revenue stream for your agency.

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Conversion rates are higher for the void management side of the service. If you offer your tenants the option of a new energy supplier through a utility switching service, you'll only receive commission if they choose to switch and that switch is successful. However, with your landlords' consent, your agency can choose to control the void management side, turning it on for all of your landlords' properties to ensure the change of occupancy is automatic - for council and water too - as is the case with Goodlord. When a tenant moves out, your landlord's property's energy supply can be switched, every time, meaning more commission for you.

Boost your conversions

When choosing a void utility switching service, you should also take into account the size and experience of the energy provider it offers. Your tenants are free to choose who they buy their energy from and they may have switched to a small supplier that's on the edge of bankruptcy. The property would then be locked into a process that can take up to six to 12 weeks to unwind as a new supplier takes over and a bill from the bust energy supplier is eventually generated.

To avoid the headache of a supplier going bust, you can switch your landlord's property to a large energy supplier during the void period. You will therefore give your tenants the option of a large energy provider as they move in and this may help your conversion rates, if they prefer to get their supply from an established company. Goodlord works with ScottishPower, for example, a safe and stable energy company which has been supplying energy in the UK for over 100 years, to millions of homes across the UK. A track record like that could give your tenants and landlords more confidence for the future of their energy supply.

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