Demand for rental accommodation in London is high and all our London lettings offices are busy with enquiries, particularly for one and two bedroom rental apartments. Despite the proliferation of new residential buildings throughout the capital, there is generally a shortage of good, affordable rental properties so we are continuing to look for new instructions to meet the increasing demand from tenants.
Our Hyde Park lettings office reports that there is steady rental demand across W2 at the moment with the new developments in Paddington Basin dominating the rental market. 3 Merchant Square is one of the most popular residential buildings with apartments achieving a premium rental – at £600-£650 per week for a one bed, around £200 per week more than other buildings in the area.
We are starting to see a shift in tenant profile, with increasing numbers of applicants moving to London from other parts of the UK, from as far as afield as Scotland. Paddington area is the perfect location for many of these applicants – being so close to Paddington station makes it very easy for them to travel home to visit friends and family at weekends. These tenants tend to prefer slightly longer, two or three year tenancies and are looking for stability. As they have longer term plans, they’ll often ask for unfurnished properties so they can bring their belongings with them whereas overseas tenants prefer the simplicity of a furnished apartment.
Stability is the aim of many tenants and tenancy renewals are at 75-80%. With rent increases at RPI (currently 1.1%), so long as they like their rental property, there is no advantage in moving. This is good news for landlords too as it eliminates void periods between tenancies which is a good sign for the London rental market.
Over at our Ealing lettings office, again the picture is one of a thriving rental market, with high demand from corporate tenants and relocation agents. Enquiries are up on this time last year, which in itself was very busy, with new apartments, including Skyline at Dickens Yard, Kew Bridge West and Kew Bridge Road all generating plenty of interest. Apartments are letting within a day or two and tenancy renewals are at an all time high of over 90%. It is the same over at Fulham Reach, another extremely popular property development at the Fulham end of Hammersmith. Demand is such that we are opening an office on-site at Fulham Reach at the end of the month.
City, Canary Wharf, Docklands and East London
With the spring weather, the rentals market in the City, Canary Wharf and East London is moving up a gear. Executives from the accountancy sector make up a lot of recent demand for rental apartments – we’re also working with relocation agents finding homes for executives from Facebook and Google, suggesting both companies might be undertaking a recruitment drive.
There are several new developments launching near Canary Wharf attracting a lot of interest. One Tower Bridge has the benefit of being close to both the City and Canary Wharf – we had several new instructions here recently which all let immediately. Rentals are £600-£650 for a one bed apartment and upwards of £800 per week for a two bed. We’re also receiving plenty of enquiries for Lincoln Plaza and nearby Baltimore Tower, both just a few minutes from Canary Wharf. The Junction near Shadwell and Cityscape close to Aldgate station are also hugely popular with corporate tenants.
The spec of these luxury residential towers gets higher and higher and applicants now consider facilities such as a 24 hour concierge, gym and swimming pool to be basic requirements. The standard of rental accommodation in the City and Canary Wharf is unprecedented. Overall, we’ve had a very strong first quarter to 2015 and with the level of rental demand so high, we see an extremely positive outlook for the next few months too
North/North West London
residential developments in North London are always highly sought after so rental demand at Beaufort Park in Hendon is high throughout the year. We are exceptionally busy at the moment though, with demand definitely outstripping supply. One bed apartments are letting super quickly, within a day or two, and we currently have a waiting list of applicants. Two bed apartments at Beaufort Park are letting quickly too, mainly to young, professional couples. Rents are £290-£300 per week for a one bed, up from £280-£290 per week this time last year. Two bed apartments are achieving £400-£420 per week against £350-£400 per week a year ago. With shortages of stock, most apartments are achieving asking rental due to this high demand. Most of the applicants we see work either in central London or the City and choose Beaufort Park as the commute is so easy.
The most popular buildings at the moment are the Cavendish, Ellison and Claremont apartments – as the newest apartments these always let most quickly and tenants are happy to pay a premium for them. With availability so limited throughout the development, we are keenly waiting for the launch of the Constantine Apartments later this year and as usual, when a new building comes on stream, we expect to have a waiting list of applicants well in advance.
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