With the latest report from Zoopla showing that rents look set to drop to their lowest level in almost six years, landlords in the capital need to now, perhaps more than ever, consider what their tenants truly value in a property.
London has already seen a 3% fall in rents during the first half of the year, and the slide could extend to 5% by the end of the year to £1,580, which would be the lowest level since late 2014, according to a report from property portal Zoopla.
To help boost your chances of finding a tenant in today’s market, it is important to understand what renters are curretly looking for when finding somewhere to live
There is no doubting the fact that the ongoing threat of Covid-19 is shaping the UK rental market.
London-based Benham and Reeves surveyed more than 1,700 tenants asking them to rank several rental property features on their importance, before comparing this to the same survey results from last year.
The research from the letting and estate agent found that fast broadband is now the most sought after feature as a potential future of working from home looms.
The more significant changes have been the prioritisation of outside space and the availability of nearby green areas such as parks. These features now rank as the second and third most important to tenants, while in the previous survey they were only the seventh and ninth most important features.
A concierge or onsite security remains relatively unchanged in importance. At the same time, excellent transport links within a nine-minute walk used to be the number one priority but now sit as the fifth most important.
More social features, such as a cinema room or gym, came in as the least important, whereas previously they ranked mid-table.
Marc von Grundherr, director of Benham and Reeves, said: “There’s no doubt that the spread of the coronavirus has had a notable impact on the property prioritisation of tenants. These emerging trends are likely to continue with talk of a second wave and many preempting another potential lockdown.
“That’s not to say that tenants don’t want the traditional facilities such as an on-site gym or social area to relax in. However, the ability to work successfully from home, while also having the option to take some time out in the fresh air, are undoubtedly the biggest draws at present. This is likely to be the case for the foreseeable future, although we should see a seasonal adjustment as the long sunny days start to disappear.”
What is the most important feature of a rental property for renters at the moment?
1st. Fast broadband (previously 2nd)
2nd. Outside space (previously 7th)
3rd. Close to a park or outside green space (previously 9th)
4th. Concierge or onsite security (previously 3rd)
5th. Excellent transport links – max 9 minutes’ walk to a station (previously 1st)
6th. Supermarket either onsite or within 250 yards (previously 4th)
7th. Professionally managed property (previously 8th)
8th. Air conditioning (previously 10th)
9th. Cinema screening room (previously 5th)
10th. Gym (previously 6th)