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Revealed - where rental stock is in short supply across England

New research by a property investment consultancy has revealed which regions of England present the most promising opportunities for buy to let landlords based on a shortage of stock in the current rental market. 

By analysing the overall stock levels of private rented homes in each region of England and comparing it with the number of available rental listings in the same area, Sequre Property Investment has highlighted where there is the most need for more rental homes and thus the best opportunity for buy to let investors.

Across the whole of England, there are some 4.7m privately rented dwellings. Of those, some 168,634 or 3.6 per cent are currently on the market, looking for new tenants.


However, when looking at each region of England, the data suggests that there could be higher demand in some regions due to a lower percentage of available rental homes against the size of the overall rental market.

In the South West, there are some 520,000 private rental homes but currently, just 7,802 of these are available to rent - only 1.5 per cent of the total rental market.

But Sequre says it’s the broad North of England that could present the best opportunity for buy to let investors, accounting for the next three lowest levels of available rental properties.

Specifically, in the North West just 2.2 per cent of the estimated total private dwellings found in the region are currently available to rent. 

At 2.4 per cent the North East is only marginally higher, with Yorkshire and the Humber on 2.5 per cent.

This total of available rental properties sits just above three per cent in the East and West Midlands, as well as the East of England.

The South East comes in at 3.7 per cent and London is the highest by some margin at  7.2 per cent.

Sequre sales director Daniel Jackson says: “So much attention is given to the sales market, not least in the wake of Covid-19, but the rental market remains far more relevant for many millions of people in this country. 

“These people need homes - good quality, secure homes - and yet the buy-to-let industry has come under attack from a government that has a vision of England where everybody owns and nobody rents.

“But this isn’t a vision that most people share and so, despite the government’s best efforts, choosing to invest in a region with a lack of available rental properties on the market means you have a great chance of securing reliable, long-term tenancies in high-demand markets.”


Region Private Rent Stock 2019 Rental Listings (all inc let agreed) Current Listings as % of private rental stock
London 963794 69329 7.2%
South East 728927 27226 3.7%
East 451828 14896 3.3%
East Midlands 231539 7448 3.2%
West Midlands 546579 16709 3.1%
Yorkshire & Humber 553477 13980 2.5%
North East 180174 4276 2.4%
North West 529169 11811 2.2%
South West 520078 7802 1.5%
Sources Gov.uk-Estimate of dwellings by tenure Rightmove (29/07/21) Rental listings/ dwellings stock


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  • John  Adams

    If Government and the Rent Activists want to solve the problem, guess they'll just have to build some or buy. After all what do you expect if you drive Landlords away, these properties still sell because of the lack of supply, and you end up with overcrowded B&Bs instead of Rentals. These people just function with no basic understanding of economics, and think the world should be Free, forgetting they tried that in the USSR and North Korea, and China isn't exactly paradise if you can't agree with the Party line.

  • PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    Situation has been made increasing worse by the draconian measures campaigned for by so-called #GenerationFreeloaders and inflicted by the Govt on the PRS in the last decade.
    It was so comical to hear a Tory Councillor earlier this week lamenting the shortage of rental properties available - duh.

  • icon

    Got to a point I am looking at commercial property over residential due to the current BS we put up with. If it has a residential aspect lucky them if not commercial is just fine


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