The London rental market – January 2020

Nearly all of our London lettings branches had a hectic December, with rental demand from applicants remaining high at what is usually a quiet time of year. This strong market has continued into 2020, with enquiry levels quickly picking up again in early January. With demand strengthening already, most our branches continue to see lower stock levels than we would like and this is likely to be our greatest challenge this year. We continue to gain new instructions from landlords although of course, we would like more. And with this in mind, we will continue to carry out our regular programme of international visits to meet with clients and host our popular property investment seminars which are always well attended.

We are delighted to announce that we are now planning the opening of our new Shoreditch branch which will be located at the Berkeley Group’s new 250 City Road property development in EC1. Located in Zone 1, close to the City, Old Street and Shoreditch, this is the perfect location for us to serve clients who own rental properties in these areas, as well as allowing us to be well placed for professionals (particularly in the banking, tech, Fintech and insurance sectors) searching for rental homes in these increasingly popular residential locations. The area is home to many successful organisations and popular with many working in the City. The new branch will be managed by our Japan Desk Manager Yoshi Tsuji who many of you will know already. Our City office in Fleet Street remains nearby so we really have the financial quarter covered well.

Rentals in the City and East London

2 bed to rent at Royal Mint Gardens

Our East London branches (the City, Canary Wharf, London Dock/Wapping, Surrey Quays and Greenwich) all saw good levels of enquiries from applicants already. Professionals working in tech, Fintech and banking sectors have continued to dominate enquiries for rental apartments and we expect this trend to continue in 2020. Thankfully, we are also receiving plenty of new instructions from landlords so we have good stocks to meet this strong demand. Among the most sought-after residential developments at the moment is Royal Mint Gardens near Tower Hill which has just started to complete, and where we have a good choice of studios, one, two and three apartments which are all letting quickly. Other popular developments among City professionals are Principal Tower in Bishopsgate, Lincoln Square in Holborn, WC2, London City Island and Southbank Place in SE1 and we expect demand for these to continue to increase throughout 2020.

Central London

Our central London lettings branches in Kensington, Knightsbridge and Hyde Park are starting to see rental demand increase now after a fairly quiet start to the year, as is usual. Enquiries are starting to pick up, with developments such as 375 Kensington High Street amongst the most popular. We even let one apartment there before there was time to post it online, such is the high level of interest. Also new for 2020 is The Atelier in W10, a boutique residential development from Regal London. We have already received instructions here and interest is good. We are continuing to receive quite a few enquiries from relocation agents on behalf of international clients from overseas, particularly the United States.

At our Nine Elms branch, our team has been handling quite a few enquiries from applicants and let a couple of apartments after only a couple of days back in the office. These were at Gladwin Tower, which has been incredibly popular, and any apartment here lets immediately. Generally, one bed apartments are currently the most popular amongst tenants.

West London

2 bed to rent at Fulham Reach

Our West London branches in Dickens Yard in Ealing, Kew Bridge in Brentford and Imperial Wharf near Fulham, remained busy throughout December and again are now seeing enquiries start to increase. Most properties are letting almost immediately due to the shortage of stock. Fulham Reach and Sovereign Court in Hammersmith are also seeing demand pick up quickly after the holidays. Our teams have already been taking on several new instructions but this will only go a small way to meet demand so we would like to talk to any landlords with properties in these areas who may wish to instruct a new letting agent for their property in 2020.

North London

Our Beaufort Park branch in Colindale remains very low on stock yet demand from applicants is high. In December, we let a number of properties to applicants wishing to move in January – far more than we would expect at that time of year. We are now letting apartments to applicants waiting to move in February as we do not have enough properties available earlier. With insufficient properties to meet demand we would like to talk to landlords who currently have a vacant property at Beaufort Park as we still have waiting lists of applicants keen to move in immediately.  Shortages of stock also remain a problem in Highgate and Hampstead. Enquiries have started to build as we move through January, with professionals looking for one bed apartments in particular but we have limited availability and certainly not enough stock to meet demand.

If you have a property becoming available soon for rental and would like an up to date appraisal of what rent you can expect, why not ask us for a valuation. Or talk to one of our branches. Contact us.

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About the Author

For 35 years Anita has been the driving force behind Benham and Reeves’ success as it has grown from a single branch in Hampstead, to one of central London’s oldest, independently owned sales, letting and property management companies. Anita's vision has driven the expansion of the business to offer a complete range of property investment related services from under one roof, from purchase to handover, furnishings and/or refurbishment to lettings and property management. Read more about Anita Mehra here - Read full profile

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