Landlords are getting some competition in the suburbs where developers have started to build rafts of new family rental homes.

Legal & General is the latest house-builder to set its sights on the growing ‘suburban build to rent’ sector, with an ambitious plan to create 1,000 family homes each year from 2024.

Savills reports that of the 66 completed suburban build to rent schemes in the UK, all are located on the edge of major employment hubs, while most have schools, shops, medical centres, access to major roads and bus stops within a 1km radius.

Amenities in the schemes are more geared to families, with common features including playgrounds, electric car clubs, a community centre and exercise facilities.

Entirely urban

It adds that while there are 2.3 million households in the private rented sector, until recently new developments had been skewed almost entirely to urban, high-density markets.

Legal & General has recognised the untapped potential in a market forecast to grow in excess of £200 billion, and aims to meet increasing demand for single family homes with its schemes.

It promises they’ll be: “community-focused and service-led, offering residents choice, security of tenure and flexibility”. Developments will consist of a mixture of houses and low-density apartments, while ticking all the boxes for post-COVID requirements, with home offices and more extensive outdoor space.

David Reid, MD of Legal & General suburban build to rent, says it will provide high quality rental housing options for the growing number of families across the UK.

Our size and commitment to the housing market across tenures, means we’re in a strong position to lead the way in this nascent sector, delivering well-managed, service-led communities which provide a reliable and positive alternative to home ownership,” he says.

Read more about build to rent.
What does build to rent mean for private landlords?



  1. Institution investment has traditionally avoided the UK residential property, due to political risks (rent control, right to buy, etc).
    Remember how the pension funds moved out of UK farmland and into retail and office investment?
    Why are they now entering residential property?
    Low bond yields?

  2. Residential property is a good diversifier, but I wouldn’t want too large an exposure.
    I also would want to look closely at the costs involved in such exposure.


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