Buy-to-let  

Rural rents pushed up by demand for more space

Rural rents pushed up by demand for more space
 Credit: Luke MacGregor/Bloomberg

Average rents have increased in many rural areas as demand for larger properties has risen, according to The Deposit Protection Service (The DPS).

DPS data showed rents in a number of rural areas rose in Q3 2020, with Gwynedd in Wales seeing the largest percentage increase, at 8.33 per cent (£37).

Correspondingly, the service also found lower demand for urban properties and flats, with a trend of falling rents in large cities and towns.

Bristol, for example, saw the sharpest price decrease in England, at 6.78 per cent, or an average of £65.

Matt Trevett, managing director at The DPS, said: “Our latest rent index clearly shows that tenants are following homeowners in reconsidering city living and moving to the countryside. 

“The prevalence of homeworking seems to be causing many urban renters to reassess their priorities, including a new desire for increased indoor and outside space. 

“Greater demand for both rural and larger properties seems to have driven rent prices up while urban property and flats have become cheaper for tenants.”

According to The DPS, national average rents for all property types increased during the last quarter, except for flats.

Detached properties saw the highest increase of 1.79 per cent (£18), while flats saw a decrease of 0.63 per cent (£5).

The trend reflects the sales market where the average price for property has risen year-on-year, except for flats and maisonettes, according to the UK House Price Index for August.

Paul Fryers, managing director at Zephyr Homeloans, commented: “The DPS’ latest figures illustrate how quickly the coronavirus pandemic has influenced tenants’ behaviour. 

“Landlords are looking strategically at their portfolios to maximise yields, which, along with the government’s decision to suspend stamp duty on the first £500,000 on all property sales until the end of March, is adding to increased activity in the buy to let mortgage market."

chloe.cheung@ft.com

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