Okay, that was something of a rhetorical question – there can’t be many agents who wouldn’t want critical information quicker. The faster you know the answers, the faster you can finalise agreements, and you can reduce void periods, keeping you and your landlords happy. So yes, let’s assume that you’d love accelerated referencing.
It’s all possible because of Open Banking. The principle has been around for a couple of years, but it’s taken a while for the general public to see the advantages. Perhaps the term Open Banking is misleading because the initiative gives bank customers greater control over their information. It’s safe and secure, and using special interfaces, it can enhance the customer experience by simplifying and streamlining processes.
We’re taking advantage of this technology to deliver SMART references, which are fast, accurate and remarkably good value. The method is simple for everyone. The applicant allows us access via a simple widget. This gives us – online – a 12-month income history. A secondary system checks affordability. We add the credit check, the Anti Money Laundering check, and look at the breakdown of income into standard pay, overtime and extras. Once all the details are checked, we can give you an affordability and confidence score for each individual applicant. And providing you submit the application by our 4pm deadline, we’ll get this SMART reference completed that very day.
This superfast turnaround is great for everyone. Think about it: you could take a holding deposit before lunch and have a decision in the afternoon. This reduces voids and cuts the fall through rate. You could even use it to filter applicants before you get into the time-consuming business of arranging viewings. What’s more, this is a valuable method of reducing the chances of fraudulent details being provided in an application.
SMART references can be used as a standalone check, but if you want the extra reassurance of verification, we’ve got the in-house expertise to delve further and deeper into the applicant’s employment and rental history. And if you choose this route, you’ll have access to our Advanced and Premium Rent Protection policies.
We know the benefits for agents will be huge but developing these systems has involved significant planning and effort. Open Banking has allowed us to make huge leaps forward in integrating systems. The SMART referencing system gives applicants a better experience, saves time and money and shows your commitment to efficiency and high standards. With options to upgrade whenever you want, it’s accelerated referencing you can trust – and trust to help strengthen your business.