Hannah Read | Director
After a slow start to the year, spring has definitely sprung and the lettings market has seen an upturn in activity from March onwards. However, new legislation, increasing regulations and more government hurdles may have a long term effect on the number of Buy-to-Let properties coming to market with landlords being discouraged by revised property taxation as well as new checks such as Right to Rent. Whilst these may not deter the more seasoned investor, we predict that some landlords may look to exit the market resulting in potentially less available stock as a result.
The higher price brackets of the prime rental market remain quiet, with a majority of demand from tenants seeking properties under £1,000 per week. We’re currently experiencing a big demand for furnished one bedroom flats priced between £450 – £500 per week.
The range of tenants in the area remains diverse, with a fairly even mix from Europe, the UK and US, however over the coming months we expect an increase in demand from international students looking to secure accommodation in plenty of time for the next academic year. The average age of new tenants has been between 20-35 and the West End continues to attract tenants from a variety of professions – film, restaurants, finance and law to name but a few.
Many tenants are opting to renew and stay for a longer term rather than leave at the end of the term, which is great news for landlords as it eliminates void periods and it’s likely the tenant will agree to a nominal increase in rent (normally in line with the Retail Price Index), but not such good news for renters as this limits supply.
Spring/Summer is typically the busiest time of year for the lettings market as we generally see a surge in demand from international students looking to secure an apartment before they head home for the summer as well as graduates and more experienced professionals taking up new posts.
Airbnb has become an increasing issue for landlords with many tenants choosing to sublet the apartment either at weekends or sometimes full-time so it’s important to make sure that all incoming tenants are thoroughly vetted to avoid this where possible, something we take very seriously.
Check out the spring edition of Tavistock Bow’s IN THE KNOW for further market insight and West End lifestyle features.