Posts filed under ‘Renting & Letting’

Nearly half of all flat sharers are foreign

Nearly half of all flat sharers currently looking for a room in Britain are foreign, according to new figures released today.

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The survey, carried out by flat sharing website Easyroommate, revealed just under 50 per cent of the respondents categorise themselves as ‘not British’, with the majority indicating they are European (33 per cent), closely followed by Afro-Caribbeans, who accounted for 3 per cent.

Indians and Pakistanis made up for 2 per cent of flat sharers, while Americans and Canadians made up for 2 per cent of flat sharers. The remaining  55 per cent of respondents selected British as their nationality.

Easyroommate suggests the large numbers of foreign individuals currently based in Britain is due to the economic instability in other countries.

It explained the lack of jobs and career prospects in these areas drives people to look for opportunities elsewhere.

It added that moving to a new country can be extremely costly – and that this explains why foreign nationals who are looking for cost effective alternatives, such as flatsharing for cheaper accommodation.

Of the individuals surveyed, a large number prefer to flat share with Britains.

Maya Harruna, of Easyroommrate, said: “It’s not surprising to see that Brits are the most desired housemates. British flat sharers prefer being able to communicate fluently with the people that they live with, while people who have recently moved to the UK prefer to live with someone who speaks fluent English, as it gives them the opportunity to improve their language.”

October 1, 2014 at 10:03 AM Leave a comment

Good news for tenants as rents to rise at below rate of inflation

Rents are expected to rise at below the rate of inflation during the coming year despite tenant demand remaining strong, research showed today.

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Landlords estimate rents will edge up by an average of 1.8 per cent in the next 12 months, below both the Bank of England’s inflation target of 2 per cent and the current annual rate at which rents are rising of 2.4 per cent.

The majority of landlords said they did not plan to hike their rents at all during the coming year, with only 43 per cent saying they would increase them, according to letting agency network Your Move and Reed Rains.

Among those who do plan an increase, 57 per cent said they were hiking them to cover the cost of inflation, while 31 per cent said it was to pay for maintenance work.

Four out of 10 landlords said they had seen an increase in demand to rent a home during the past six months, and nearly two-thirds expect this trend to continue going forward.

The rise fed through to a 6.9 per cent jump in new tenancies agreed in August compared with a year earlier.

It also helped to reduce average void periods between tenants, and led to 18 per cent of landlords adding to their portfolio of rental properties.

A further 21 per cent of landlords think now is a good time to invest in a buy-to-let property, with 55 per cent attributing their confidence to strong tenant demand, while 54 per cent cited attractive property prices and 45 per cent said property provided better capital returns than other investments.

David NewnesDavid Newnes, director of Your Move and Reeds Rains, said:“Demand for rented accommodation is climbing, and there’s little sign of this stopping.

“While Help to Buy and higher loan-to-value lending are enabling first-time buyer activity, strong house price growth this year has lifted home ownership a few steps out of reach for many, and the private rented sector remains the safety net supporting those still saving for a deposit.

“This demand is also powering more supply. Secure house prices and spirited tenant demand are encouraging budding buy-to-let investors and existing landlords to add to the number of available homes to let.”

But landlords were less upbeat about the mortgage market, with 42 per cent who had tried to take out a mortgage during the past 12 months saying they had found it more difficult than a year ago.

The figure was up from 35 per cent in January, highlighting the impact of the tighter lending environment.

A further 39 per cent of landlords said buy-to-let mortgage repayments had become more expensive in the past 12 months.

Even so, one in 10 landlords cited cheap mortgage finance as a key reason why it was a good time to invest in a buy-to-let property, although the figure was down from 17 per cent in January.

Today’s figures come after letting agency chain Sequence said there were nearly seven would-be tenants chasing every available property as demand to rent soared by 17 per cent in the year to the end of August.

October 1, 2014 at 7:00 AM Leave a comment

Tenants face fierce competition for rental homes

People wanting to rent a home face fierce competition from other tenants as demand increases but the supply of properties to let falls, research showed today.

Renting 3

Around 68 per cent of letting agents reported seeing more people wanting to rent than there were properties available during the third quarter, according to the Association of Residential Letting Agents.

It is the third consecutive quarter that the number of agents reporting a mismatch between supply and demand has increased.

The situation has been exacerbated by a fall in the number of homes available on the private rental market.

ARLA members reported a 6 per cent drop in the number of managed investment properties they had on their books during the three months to the end of September, with agencies managing an average of 135 properties, down from 143.

The shortage of rental properties looks set to get worse going forward as recent house price gains tempt landlords to cash in their portfolios.

Nearly a third of landlords said they were selling a property, up from 27 per cent in the previous quarter.

At the same time, the number of landlords buying more properties fell by 8 percentage points to 27 per cent.

As a result, there were more landlords selling properties than those who were expanding their portfolios for the first time in four years.

The situation in the rental market mirrors that in the wider housing market, where the number of people looking to buy a home has fallen as more properties have been put up for sale.

David Cox, managing director at ARLA, said: “This quarter, we have seen demand for properties in the rental sector significantly rise, while the supply of residential rental properties has dropped.

“This activity has bucked the seasonal trend recorded over the past 11 years for this quarter, in which we normally see an increase in the number of new tenancies signed up.

“However, with landlords not investing in new buy-to-let property, tenants are finding it increasingly difficult to secure contracts.”

But some agents reported that a number of buy-to-let properties that landlords had tried to sell had come back on to the rental market after they had failed to find a buyer.

Meanwhile, the number of tenants who asked for references on their future landlords from a lender increased by 2 percentage points during the month to 9 per cent.

Cox said: “It’s great to see an increase in consumers making an active play to check that their landlords are financially viable.

“Renting a property and laying out considerable finances is a big commitment, and it is important that consumers ensure they are protected.”

September 24, 2014 at 5:08 PM Leave a comment

How much is the average tenant’s deposit?

The average tenancy deposit has risen by more than £300 during the past seven years, it has been revealed.

Woman looks in estate agents window

The average amount used as a deposit is £1,197.73, up 34 per cent or £304 since the launch of tenancy deposit scheme in 2007.

The research by mydeposits also suggested a difference of £1,168 between the average cost of deposits in the most expensive and cheapest regions in England and Wales.

Tenants pay the highest deposits in London, where the average is £1,760,30 – a rise of 2.16 per cent in a year.

The capital is followed by the South East, where the average deposit is £1,181.99, a rise of £50.44 compared to the same period a year ago.

The cheapest average deposits paid are in Yorkshire and Humber at £592.75.

Eddie Hooker, chief executive of mydeposits, said: “It is worth considering that the increase in the average deposit value is closely linked to annual rents, and commonly deposits are the equivalent to between a month to six week’s rent”.

To rent for £1,200 a month:

1. Two bedroom cottage in Sutton Veny, Warminster.

04.08.14 Rent 1

2. One bedroom flat in London’s Canary Wharf.

04.08.14 Rent 2

3. Three bedroom terrace house in Angmering, Littlehampton.

04.08.14 Rent 3

 

 

August 4, 2014 at 5:10 PM Leave a comment

Number one complaint of Generation Rent?

Generation Rent is a pretty disgruntled bunch if a new survey is to be believed. More than half feel they have been ripped off by their landlord, with a failure to make repairs to their homes the number one gripe.

Woman looks in estate agents window

According to the study by loans company Ocean Finance, more than half (52 per cent) of 18 to 24 year olds currently rent, and 46 per cent of those aged 24 to 34 do the same. More than one in five (22 per cent) of those aged 35 to 44 are also in rented accommodation.

Half of all tenants in the UK feel a private sector landlord or letting agent has ripped them off with failure to get repairs done the top reason behind this feeling, new research shows.

Here is a seven point plan to reduce the stress of renting, so you can enjoy your Young Ones years to the full:

Gordon Hood1. The internet is a brilliant way to research rental opportunities and get a good idea of what typical properties cost, but Gordon Hood, head of the lettings department at Knight Frank in Ascot, Surrey, recommends showing your face to local agents once you know what you are after. “It is great to meet the individual or couple when they come into the office, we can gleam a great deal more about their requirements and ensure we can find them the best possible property for them in the quickest possible time,” he said.

2. Use technology to help you. Rebecca Warren, lettings director at Chestertons in Hyde Park, said: “Once you know where you want to be Zoopla has a map search function that allows you to draw the desired areas and will show the availability within that area, you can then set up an alert so any new instructions are sent over immediately to you.”

Jenny Kimmings3. Check out the small print when signing up for a house or flat. Jenny Kimmings, lettings manager of Hamptons International in Marlborough, says it is crucial to understand exactly what you are agreeing to. “Check any special conditions written into the tenancy agreement, for example a break clause if you have agreed one, or you will find yourself tied in when you don’t think you are,” she said. “Or perhaps the landlord has agreed to redecorate before you move in. Anything agreed verbally like that would need to be in the tenancy agreement.” It is also important to ask your agent what fees you are going to be charged – and if you will be charged again as and when you renew your lease.

4. Make sure your deposit is going to be held in a Government-approved tenancy deposit scheme, so the landlord can’t just keep it when you leave, and make sure a full and accurate inventory of the state of the property is made when you move on so you don’t get blamed for damage.

Nicola Merry5. Although landlords can be frustrating Nicola Merry, lettings manager at Kay & Co says the best way to handle them is to be a model tenant they won’t want to lose – that way they are likely to try and keep you happy. That means paying rent on time, responding politely and quickly if they get in touch, and taking care of the property. It is always nice to meet with your new landlord before moving in, especially if they are they managing the property themselves,” she added. “It helps build a rapport especially if renting for the long term, which can be invaluable if problems arise during the tenancy.” “

6. If your problems are really severe and you suspect laws are being broken your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau or campaigning charity Shelter will be able to advise you on the best course of action.

7. Lack of space is a common gripe for renters. If your possessions are spilling out of control consider renting a self-storage space to stash your treasures until you have a place of your own. Make sure to shop around to get the best deal. Aussie Man and Van, for example, offers storage in London for £9.95 plus VAT per week for a 175 cubic ft space.

To let: Pick of the rentals…

1. Live in total James Bondesque luxury in this Knightsbridge pad, available for £50,000 a week (and no, this is not a typing error).

28.07.14 Rent 1

2. Make a life changing move to an adorable thatched cottage in Cornwall, yours for £345 a week.

28.07.14 Rent 2

3. Young professionals in Manchester will love this three bedroom warehouse flat in the fashionable Northern Quarter, on at £288 a week.

28.07.14 Rent 3

4. Or live in the centre of Liverpool in a lovely listed townhouse, available at £387 a week.

28.07.14 Rent 4

July 28, 2014 at 12:06 PM Leave a comment

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