Posted on Friday, December 17, 2021

Boost for landlords - rental demand hits an all-time high

As the UK continues its economic recovery post-Covid-19, the demand for rental housing continues to reach new highs despite the pandemic.


Since landlords ultimately seek to avoid void periods across all their properties, now could be the time to make the most of the current rental demand.


Recent reports surrounding the market reveal that there may be further opportunities for landlords and investors to expand their business during this prosperous time.


Here at Kings Lettings, we analyse the rental demand that the UK is currently experiencing and what it means for landlords.


London is the top location where demand is increasing


Landlords looking to invest in new locations can get ahead of the game by keeping a close eye on the locations that provide the most demand.

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The National Residential Landlords Association recently published new research outlining an influx of demand across the UK private rental market.


Information provided by private landlords located in England and Wales was collected to gain insight into the performance of the current market.


In total, 57% of participants who took part in the survey announced that during the third quarter of 2021 demand for rental properties increased. This is 39% higher than the second quarter of the year.


In London, home to 18 universities, it is likely that the increase in interest was in part fuelled by students returning to university during this time of year. The return of face-to-face teaching at universities is likely to have increased the number of young renters in the capital, as will the return to cities that has occurred more generally since society opened back up in July.


The location that continues to receive the most interest is England’s capital. Well over half of the participants (68%) who operate in outer London reported that demand had increased, while 54% of landlords with properties across central London also saw increased demand. This is 16% higher than the same time in 2020.


Trends and ongoing circumstances impacting the rental market

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Over the past few months, the UK, and particularly London, has returned to something resembling normality. The return of restaurants, bars, venues, and offices is helping to drive the surge in rental demand.


Yet Covid continues to stimulate trends in the rental market. Following the recent announcement of the Omicron variant, priorities may take a shift again. People could have to work from home once more, meaning being close to the city to work may not be a priority.

Zoopla figures show that between June and September this year London’s rents increased by 4.7%. This was seen as offices reopened and workers returned to the city during this time. Zoopla also forecasts that London rental growth is expected to pick up to 3.5% next year.


The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) forecasts a price hike of rents increasing as the supply of rental properties is expected to continue to lag well behind demand.


Landlords should be aware of the way these circumstances will boost the level of demand. Zoopla predicts that if the employment market remains strong and the undersupply of rental properties continues, the rental market will see further demand and growth throughout 2022.


The unprecedented level of interest across the capital proves London landlords who put their properties on their market during the next few weeks can take advantage of the current rental market and its perks. Doing so now will also increase the likelihood of achieving a fast let.


A vast number of prospective tenants, particularly in London, are on the hunt for a rental property to live in. Working alongside an experienced, dependable letting agent will ensure your property is marketed effectively and attracts the right tenants.


For information and advice on the lettings process do not hesitate to contact us at one of our branches in Essex, London, or Hertfordshire.

We also offer a free and instant online valuation to help you understand exactly how much your property is worth and how much you could charge prospective tenants who rent.