OpenRent Community

Rent Now button

Please make the ‘rent now’ button optional. It is not clear to tenants that this does not guarantee them the flat, or that it will take time for them to receive a refund for their holding deposit. Not all tenants will read all the text carefully and accurately for a myriad of reasons, and the site should have a duty of care to tenants of all ability with this regards.

I have had a prospective tenant with whom we have had to explain that it is not us holding his money - and that we have no control or knowledge when he will get his refund. For all I know he could be really needing this money for another flat, so I understand why he is annoyed.

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When you had first communicated with him You should advise “do not place any holding deposit until I say it is ok to do so” That would eliminate this problem. if they do it without your authority that is their problem and you do not have to solve it.

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Colin3 you are clueless - that doesn’t eliminate the problem. People can click rent now without having even talked to you. Also, it is insane to have to tell everyone to not do that. I don’t want it, I like the rest of Openrent, so I am giving feedback on this hoping they will rethink it.

Finally - ‘if they do it without your authority that is their problem and you do not have to solve it’ - it is somewhat my problem when they are angry and they have perceived I am keeping their money.

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James 7 then you must have given out your phone number?

No, but thats not the point, you may be some kind of sociopath who is completely fine with having people think you’ve stolen their money, but I’m not.

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whatt i can tell is you need to wind your neck in to be a successful Landlord as you will meet up with all sorts of tenants. If he is a clueless prospective tenant then you cannot do much about it . as he will meet clueless landlords. ,and want to rent from them.Fortunately I think open rent is great allthogh I do not have to use them very often as my tenants have stayed , some for up to 22years. I am clueless as to why they love me and clueless as to all the money I have made. I love being clueless

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Apologies for calling you clueless mate - bad day. You’re right I should probably just ignore it, but it annoyed me enough today to have to moan.

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James 7 .No problem mate .I have had things that wind me up… like Opus Energy not accepting my meter readings. As landlords this is going to happen quite a bit . We have to let it go over our heads and move on. not easy I know . All the best for the future. . We will need it the way things are going for us

I’m with you on this. I’m a tennant and from my perspective it looks as if the landlord has enabled me to go ahead and place a holding deposit. I’m a reader of small print and messaged the landlords to check we weren’t about to go ahead, I hadn’t even viewed the property at this point.

I just hope Open rent are getting a good rate from all this borrowed money.

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Hi James, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. It’s really helpful for us to get feedback on how the site works.

I am sorry to hear a tenant has thought you were responsible for releasing the holding deposit. That sounds stressful.

We at OpenRent are often walking a line between, on the one hand, making the site easy to use, so
that landlords can let property quickly and tenants can secure a new home quickly, and on the other hand, making sure things only progress when both parties have agreed.

Many different setups and combinations have been tested on high volumes of users, and the current configuration of the Rent Now process is the best performing so far. Obviously we continue to test, monitor and develop, and take on feedback such as that you have passed on to us here.

The tenant who placed the holding deposit on your property will have been presented with details on how their money will be treated several times, including in our terms and conditions and on the page they see after they press the Rent Now button. They also receive emails explaining how OpenRent works.

For the large majority of tenants, the way we currently share this information ensures they know how their money will be treated should they place a holding deposit. Unfortunately (but inevitably), some tenants will not read this information at any of the points at which it is presented to them. Even though their money will be handled fairly regardless of them reading the terms, there is not much more we can do except for sharing the terms with them at the relevant points.

Sam

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Hi Sam

Thankyou for your reply. But I’m pretty sure the reason OpenRent have left the button in is to upsell the rent now service, presumably a few hits outweighs the complaints. It is sad when companies choose to make money, by intentionally lowering the standard of service.

James

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Hi Sam.

In my ignorence, could this issue be because of the wording: “Rent Now” literally means “I now committ to renting this place as if I had signed the agreement.” and if I have rented before then I might assume too that “The agreement is only a formality with special terms unique to this landlord that hopefully O.R. has vetted to be reasonable”.
As a possible improvement to add to your list of proposed software updates, I suggest rewarding the button name and providing an instant warning as occurs with some computer applications, e.g. rename the button: “Place reservation deposit with O.R.” When the button is pressed, a pop-up appears stating something along the lines of “Are you sure you want to place a reservation deposit with Open Rent and not the landlord, to safeguard it against frauduland landlords. Refunds if due may take longer to get.” with YES NO buttons.
Of course, research and trials will be needed to find the briefest self explanatory phrases to replace the above, but it may be helpful if this situation is not rare.

I agree with this complaint. I’ve had multiple prospective tenants click the button before speaking to us and assuming they have secured the property then getting angry with us when we explain that’s not the case. It is very misleading. The Rent Now/Pay holding deposit should ONLY be offered when the landlord makes it open to a prospective tenant. - It’s actually the reason we don’t use the rent now service.

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How do we make the ‘rent now’ button optional?

I agree that the ‘rent now’ button is totally confusing to prospective tenants. I have had to disappoint a few who had viewed my property and thought they were then holding it. It serves a useful purpose only when the landlord has made a selection. I think it should become active at that point.

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The rent now button is confusing to tenants. My recent experience is having two prospective tenants pay holding deposits because they believed that openrent had “told them to do it”. I don’t use rent now which they would have known if they contacted me or requested a viewing. There should be an option to disable rent now until the landlord wants to use it and only take deposits when the landlord requests it. Tenants are not booking a hotel room they are entering into a longer commitment.

Openrent’s reply is disappointing. You are upsetting landlords and tenants and creating unnecessary work having to reverse all the payments. Please listen and protect tenants from themselves.

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I agree. I dont want people pressing this that I personally have not seen or spoken to face to face. It should be for me to say press the rent now button if you are happy to be referenced and they feel they will pass.

Agree. I had to reverse “Rent now” a couple of times too.

Yes, its a real pain. There should be a way of opting out of it