A new report looking at the UK rental market has revealed a strong and sustained demand for privately rented homes.
Surrenden Invest’s 2019 Rental Market Snapshot has considered the key drivers behind this boom in the UK’s private rental sector (PRS), as well as what it means to those who live and invest in it.
Jonathan Stephens, Surrenden Invest MD, said: “What we’re seeing is a continuing drive towards rented accommodation in the UK, with developers racing to meet the demand for contemporary homes in city centres. Tenants are seeking ever more experiential homes, with concierge services and exciting roof terraces becoming something of a must.
“Investors, meanwhile, have largely shrugged off recent announcements, from the Brexit delay and potential Section 21 ban to Labour’s challenge to permitted development rules.”
In recent years, former office blocks have been converted into some 42,000 homes under the altered permitted development rules (PDR). Labour has proposed changing the rules yet again (following the Conservatives’ decision to change them back in 2013). This is due to permitted developments not being required to provide affordable homes or meet official space standards. However, there is the possibility that such a change may put further pressure on the UK’s limited supply of housing unless it is replaced with an alternative.
Stephens went on to say: “Investors in the UK rental market are increasingly unphased by issues such as the potential Section 21 notice ban and the talk of PDR rule changes. We’re finding that those who were determined enough to see out the increase in stamp duty and the phasing out of mortgage interest relief are in it for the long-haul – which is good news for the UK rental market, given the continually increasing demand for privately rented homes.”
Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle and the London commuter belt are highlighted as key markets for rental properties. These hotspots provide the lifestyle that many tenants are currently after, as well as good yields and growth for property investors.
Currently, the North West holds the focus for capital growth, with new figures from HM Land Registry showing a greater rise in house prices than any other English region. Monthly growth was 1.3% between January and February, with an annual uplift of 4.0% in the year to February.