As the year draws to a close and the challenge of the pandemic continues, landlords might well be questioning whether further investment in the rental market is a sensible option. The results of Belvoir’s Q2 survey of a cross section of franchised offices from across the UK could well aid the decision-making process. The first key takeaway of Belvoir’s survey is that not a single Belvoir office reported a decrease in rents in Q2. Furthermore, an overwhelming 95% reported an increase in rents. Stock shortages are high in most areas, and tenant demand shows no sign of slowing down. Sounds interesting? Read on…

The second key takeaway from the survey is that no Belvoir offices forecast a decrease in rents in Q3. In fact, the majority (61%), of Belvoir offices surveyed forecast rental increases in areas that included Wembley, Harlow, Swale, Stone, Telford, Shrewsbury, Cardiff and Pontypridd, Paisley, the South West, Yorkshire, the North East, most of the East Midlands and the North West. Offices in Peterborough, Nottingham, Derby West, Burton, Sidcup, Bolton, Leamington Spa, Stoke on Trent, Tamworth, Bangor, Edinburgh and most of the South East are predicting that rents in their areas will remain static.

Franchisees in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland paint a similar picture.

Scotland

Denise Paisley, Director of Belvoir Paisley confirms increased rents for houses and flats during Q2 2021, with demand increasing for houses, but demand remaining unchanged for flats. With stock shortages of all types and sizes of property Denise predicts that both demand and rents will increase in Q3. Belvoir’s Edinburgh office reports increased rents and tenant demand across the board in Q3 with no change in rents or demand. Edinburgh is experiencing a shortage of room rents, three, four and five bed detached houses, with an over-supply of one/two bed flats.

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Wales

Over in Wales, Rob Price from Belvoir Cardiff and Pontypridd confirms that rents and tenant demand increased for every property type during Q2 2021. Flat and house rents are predicted to continue increasing in Q3, with room rents remain static.
Rob reports a shortage of properties of all sizes and types, with many tenants adopting a cautious approach and remaining in properties for longer. Equally, the last 18 months have prevented many investors from entering the rental market in this area. As a result, there are insufficient homes to meet the incredible number of enquiries and applications for each rental property.

Northern Ireland

Jackie Burns in the Belvoir Bangor office says that rents and tenant demand increased across the board during Q2 2021. She predicts that over the next quarter, rents and demand are likely to remain unchanged for all properties. Bangor has a supply shortage of all types and size of property.

Stock shortages

Having established that there is a shortage of all types of stock in most areas, the next key takeaway is what agents are most short of compared to tenant demand. The survey revealed that two, three and four bed houses were most in demand in Q2 2021. Where there was an oversupply of property, it was predominantly for flats and room rents.
Two beds are the most oversupplied types of property, followed by room rents, one bed flats and studios and then one and two bed flats, five+ bed homes and studios.

Perhaps one of the reasons for short supply is that tenants are choosing to remain in properties for longer. For example:

• 39% of tenants are staying for 13-18 months
• Just over 29% prefer a tenancy of 19-24 months
• 27% of tenants rent for over 24 months
• Just under 2.5% of tenants choose to stay for less than one year.

Rent arrears are a huge concern for landlords, but almost half of Belvoir offices reported that less than three tenants were in arrears in Q2. This was an increase when compared to Q1 21 and all of 2020, but just under 32% of offices reported 4-10 tenants in rent arrears – a decrease compared to Q1 21 and 2020. Around 63.5% of offices carried out no evictions – a decrease compared to Q1 21 and all of 2020.

Belvoir’s Q2 rental survey certainly confirms how buoyant the rental market is. If you are interested in finding out more about Buy to Let investment you can seek free professional advice from your local Belvoir office visit belvoir.co.uk/offices.

3 COMMENTS

  1. They are massive organisation / Franchise Company going back some years I used to hear Kate Faulkner promoting or singing their praises at events. However I believe they will have Cherry picked the better off Tenants so have best results. Someone has to house the rest probably us that data won’t be available by button pressing.

  2. The last thing anyone should be doing is investing in BTL.
    Getting out of the game is the shrewd thing to do.

    This is something that really only applies to leveraged LL.

    Mortgage free LL can afford to take massive risks.
    They can suffer rent defaulting without many issues

    It is the leveraged LL that needs to deleverage or sell up.

    With the end of the AST and S21 along with the ridiculous EPC regulations etc remaining a leveraged LL is a very risky business proposition.

    We have CGT increases coming in 2023.

    The soon to be even more dysfunctional repossession process means leveraged LL are faced with extreme financial risk if they CANNOT source tenants who qualify for RGI.

    Shrewd LL are divesting from the PRS or they are converting to SA or FHL.

    None of that assists desperate tenants

    The PRS does NOT exist for the exclusive occupation of long term tenants.

    It is for LL to exploit their property assets the way that suits them.

    This used to be letting to long term TENANTS on AST.

    Govt has made this business model unviable.

    No surprise then that LL are giving up on the AST lettings.

    The anti-LL rhetoric by Labour etc has reached even greater xenophobia with calls for LL to be taxed even more as a wealth tax to pay for the NHS and Social Care.

    The reaction from the PRS especially leveraged LL would be to sell up.

    Where does the wealth tax come from when hundreds of thousands of LL sell up!?

  3. Totally agree…. No sane investor will be holding inventory that is below C or a D with an easy fix. The costs associated with improving properties to meet EPC regs just isn’t sustainable…. Its cheaper to sell and purchase EPC C Grade stock. That secures the capital investment going forward. (Hopefully)

    The legal and agents fees are less than trying to upgrade a dud pre-war place.

    Anyone contemplating entering the PRS for the first time needs to take A LOT of advice and do even more research before throwing the dice on what is a crap table.

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