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Research 16 March 2016

Chestertons Residential Observer - March 2016

Potential home-buyers desert the capital

Is London pricing out the younger generation, forcing young professionals to move out of the capital to look for work and affordable homes? Instead of staying in London, fuelling the jobs and house sales markets, 128,766 people aged 21-40 left London in 2014 – up 7%1 on the year before. Among this age bracket, those aged 33 were most likely to leave the city, typically the age around which people attempt to buy their first property.

Landlord fears may see 500,000 rented homes sold

Landlords' confidence in the buy-to-let sector has collapsed to an all-time low and is now "worse than levels witnessed during the financial crash" according to the National Landlords Association (NLA). Confidence in landlords' business expectations has tumbled by more than a third over the past year – down from 67% to an all-time low of 43%. The NLA predicts that, if landlords follow through on their intentions, there will be a dramatic sell-off of half a million properties in the next year, with a further 100,000 sold each year until 2021. Over the next few years – 28% of landlords don't plan to purchase any more properties, 10% plan to reduce their portfolio, and 5% plan to sell up completely, potentially putting the squeeze on tenants and trapping more people in 'Generation Rent'.

Hard-pressed tenants turn to illegal subletting

New research2 has found one in six tenants in the UK had rented out part or all of their property to someone not on the lease. Some 25% of those who sub-let their property didn't check the terms of their lease to see if it was permitted, while 34% had not informed their landlord of the decision. The consequences when landlords catch tenants sub-letting without permission can be severe. Tenants who sublet in contravention of their lease face a range of penalties from formal warnings or fines, to increased rents or even being evicted and losing their deposit.