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Working From Home leads to rent falls in least affordable cities

Many of our less affordable cities have seen rent levels drop because of the trend for tenants to work from home and seek larger, less urban properties.

That’s the conclusion of lettings management platform Howsy.

It’s looked at the current cost of renting across 20 major UK cities and how this has changed since the property market reopened for business in May. 


The cost of renting across the UK as a whole has seen a marginal increase, up by 0.6 per cent. However, with tenant demand falling as working from home becomes the new norm, some of the country’s largest cities have seen a notable drop in the average cost of renting.

Edinburgh has seen the largest decline, down six per cent from £1,085 per month to £1,020 now. 

Cambridge has also seen a notable decline with rents falling 5.4 per cent since May, while London has seen the third-largest decline at 4.8 per cent.

Manchester, Oxford, Cardiff, Bournemouth and Liverpool also make the list in terms of rental cost declines across major UK cities.

But this hasn’t been the case across the board: Newport, Nottingham and Swansea have seen rent rises in excess of 10 per cent.

“The cities to be worst hit have largely been the least affordable, such as Edinburgh, Cambridge, London, Manchester and Oxford. With many now working from home, renting in these expensive cities doesn’t make much sense and so they’ve chosen to look further afield” says Howsy’s Calum Brennan.

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    Haven't noticed any drop in Norwich, even though most of the office blocks are empty .

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    • 26 November 2020 13:46 PM

    Crikey! There are still people in Norwich? :-)


    Possibly even more since lockdown!


    I do very nicely renting property in and around Norwich, where are your properties David

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    • 26 November 2020 16:11 PM

    Wow! I am impressed.

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    • 26 November 2020 16:24 PM

    In and around South West London.
    Richmond, Twickenham and Whitton.
    Varies from 4 bed detached ones to 2 bed flats, but majority are 3 bed semis.
    10 in all.

    What is your portfolio?


    Mostly Victorian terraced houses, couple of shops with flats over (no leasehold flats) a 1950s ex council house, and a couple of Bungalows, 16 in total slowly purchased over the past 30 yrs, Norwich area is very different to London.

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    • 26 November 2020 16:47 PM


    I have done 25 years.

    In my young days, Colman's were a Client of mine. I used to go up there a lot. Cute city, and I understand The Mustard Shop is still there?


    Yes the Mustard shop is still here but the old Colman's factory is going, expect houses will be built there .


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