Rental Market Update August 2021

In this week’s article, Amy McKinlay, Lettings Manager and Compliance Lead for Roberts & Co talks about the current rental demand locally. One of the questions we get asked all the time is, “What’s happening in the market at the moment?” for both rental and sales properties. In this post I’ll be focusing on the […]

In this week’s article, Amy McKinlay, Lettings Manager and Compliance Lead for Roberts & Co talks about the current rental demand locally.

One of the questions we get asked all the time is, “What’s happening in the market at the moment?” for both rental and sales properties. In this post I’ll be focusing on the local rental market to help you keep up to date on the latest trends in asking prices, what we’re seeing in our day to day dealings with landlords and tenants and what we’re predicting in the months to come.

In the most recent Rightmove Rental Price Tracker there were some interesting headline statistics:

  • National asking rents outside London have reached another record, and are now over £1,000 per calendar month for the first time
  • Asking rents are 2.6% higher now than in Q1 2021 and 6.2% higher than this time last year, the biggest quarterly and annual jumps ever recorded by Rightmove
  • Rental properties are finding a tenant quicker than ever before at an average of 21 days, and the fast-paced market has led to an annual drop of 36% in the number of available rental properties.

We’ve certainly seen a big jump in asking rents locally, largely due to the incredibly high demand for properties from tenants who are finding themselves in a very competitive marketplace. We haven’t seen the usual churn of properties coming back to the market as tenants naturally move on; we’re finding that unless tenants need to move (whether due to their own circumstances or a landlord selling a property) they are staying put. At Roberts & Co we’re trying to manage demand as fairly as possible, capping viewings at around 10 per property and then inviting applications for landlords to review from anyone who wants to proceed further. As ever, it’s the landlord’s final decision as to who they go ahead with.

In the North West the average asking price has now reached £854pcm, up 6.9% from the same quarter last year. Demand is exceptionally high in particular for family properties which are generally around this price point, although we are also seeing a lot of demand for properties at the lower end of the market as wages and housing benefit payments haven’t kept pace with the increase in asking rents and many tenants are finding themselves in less stable employment situations due to the impact of the pandemic.

There is a lot of talk in the trade press about rising numbers of evictions expected to begin from October this year. From 1st June 2021 the temporary eviction ban was lifted, with landlords being able to serve their tenants with a 4 month notice period. This is expected to reduce back to the usual 2 month’s notice from October. There seems to be a lot of concern around Covid-related arrears and tenants being unable to pay, however we have not recorded any unusual levels of arrears across either the Penwortham or Lostock Hall office. This may well be an issue which becomes more prevalent when the furlough scheme officially ends if there are a significant number of job losses but isn’t something which we feel is a concern at the moment.

As ever, we’re looking ahead and happy to be busy setting up new tenancies amidst the usual maintenance enquiries, inspections and everything else which comes from managing properties. If you’re a landlord with a property to let please do give us a call – we offer a very competitive package and strive for exceptional levels of service at all times. Our Property Management team can be reached on 01772 746100 – ask for Faith or Amy and they will be able to talk you through your options.

Amy McKinlay is Lettings Manager & Compliance Lead for Roberts & Co.

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