The UK’s largest provider of inventory services says rising tenancy lengths make a combination of inventories and regular inspections more valuable than ever.
No Letting Go cites the latest English Housing Survey findings that private renters live in their home for 4.3 years on average – up from 3.9 years as recently as 2017.
The EHS found the average length of residence increasing with age, from a mean of 1.3 years for private renters aged 16 to 24, up to 5.7 years for those aged 45 to 64 and a much larger 17.5 years for private renters aged 75 and over.
While the time in current accommodation was relatively short, time in tenure appeared longer, according to the EHS, suggesting that private renters were moving home within the private rented sector.
It found that most private renters had rented from private landlords for a continuous period of three years or more. In total, 18 per cent had been private renters for three to four years, 24 per cent for five to nine years, and 30 per cent for 10 years or more.
“The trend has been this way for quite some time, with the average tenancy length slowly rising over the years. This isn’t surprising given the growth of the private rented sector among all ages in recent times, now accounting for 19 per cent of all households in England” explains Nick Lyons, founder of No Letting Go.
He continues: “While this is undoubtedly good news for landlords and letting agents, in terms of more tenancies, more rental income and more growth for all involved, longer tenancies also potentially increase the problems surrounding maintenance, repairs and wear and tear, which could in turn increase the number of issues at check-out.
“Rather than longer tenancies making inventories less vital, they actually make them more so to increase transparency, create a solid evidence trail and keep issues to a minimum if a tenant decides to move out for whatever reason.”
And he concludes: “No-one doubts that longer tenancies are better in terms of stability, peace of mind and comfort for landlords and tenants, as well as longer management contracts for agents – but it shouldn’t be a time to get complacent or to take tenancies for granted. Because long tenancies have a longer gap between the start and end, for obvious reasons, the need for the check-in report to be as thorough as possible is actually much greater.”
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