London rental supply falls as sharp rise is recorded in other major UK cities
The latest Property & Homeowner Report, released by the marketing consultancy TwnetyCi shows a sharp rise in the supply of rental properties on offer across the UK’s largest city.
However the report also found that demand for rental homes in London outstrips available properties, with new buy-to-let policies causing a shortage of supply in the capital.
According to the report, in the last quarter of 2017 there was a rise in the availability of rental versus sales properties on the market in the UK’s top 10 largest cities, excluding London. The only exception was the city of Glasgow.
Manchester now has a ratio of 50:50 when it comes to dividing rental and sales properties, while the city of Newcastle has more properties for rent than for sale.
In contrast the city of London is losing its status as the rental capital of the UK, with fewer rental properties than those available to buy. The share of rental properties on the market in London ended 2017 down 4% year-on-year.
The most affected areas in the capital were East Central and West Central London with the share of the market down by 14% and 10% respectively.
In terms of volume and market share, all areas across Central London have witnessed a fall in rentals. This is a surprising statistic perhaps, for a city that typically relies on a higher number of rentals.
“The big decline in properties for rent now in London suggests that the government’s anti-landlord, buy-to-let policies may have backfired,” property commentator Kate Faulkner said of the findings.
“Instead of improving conditions for tenants, what we’re seeing now is a decline in the availability of properties for rent. Although it hasn’t necessarily pushed up rental prices, it does mean that the growing population of renters now have fewer options than before.”
She added: “Looking at London particularly, it’s difficult to see that the reduction in rental properties has translated into a ‘magic’ increase in the number of people buying homes; something which the government had hoped for.”
The report highlighted the Silver Economy as the fastest growing market segment, witnessing a 31% rise in exchanges year-on-year amongst this particular demographic. Millennials are still finding it tricky in comparison to get on the property ladder, or they are choosing to rent for lifestyle reasons. The number of exchanges has fallen by 17% amongst those aged 18-35.
The sales market remains stable with average asking prices up by 3.3% to an average of £298,000 and sale exchanges increasing by 1% in 2017. Most exchanges took place within the £100-£200k bracket with Wales in particular experiencing a buoyant market with exchanges rising 11% year-on year.