Research by nationwide buy-to-let specialist, Sequre Property Investment, suggests that the rental market across Britain’s major cities has bounced back, as available stock levels are now lower than prior to the pandemic.
Sequre Property Investment analysed the available rental stock levels across 21 major UK cities and found that at the end of Q4, 2019 before the pandemic struck, there were a total of 96,735 rental properties listed to let.
During Q1 of 2020 when the pandemic hit and the first lockdown was implemented, dwindling demand due, in part, to working from home restrictions saw the level of rental stock surplus across major cities start to climb.
It continued to climb consistently throughout 2020, hitting a high of 171,080 at the end of Q4, 2020 – a 77% year on year increase in rental stock surplus.
However, a slow but steady return to normality during 2021 has seen this trend start to reverse. In fact, the number of rental properties available on the market has slowly declined since the start of the year, with the latest data showing just 57,382 available on the current market.
This is not only -66% less than the pandemic high of 171,080, but some -41% lower than the levels seen prior to the pandemic.
Sales Director at Sequre Property Investment, Daniel Jackson, commented: “2020 was an incredibly tough year for landlords, particularly those with rental properties in major cities who were largely reliant on tenant demand from working professionals. With restrictions preventing many from heading to their place of work, demand for rental homes within city centres plummeted as many chose to rent for less further afield while working remotely.
However, 2021 has seen a slow but steady reduction in the level of rental properties left sat on the market as a trickle of tenant demand has started to return. However, the latest data suggests that with restrictions all but gone, this trickle has turned into a strong and consistent stream and available rental stock is now lower than pre-pandemic levels.
This will be welcome news for those landlords who will no longer need to lower their rental income expectations in order to secure a tenant and we should now see a far greater level of stability remain for the remainder of the year.”