Rental demand for Short Let apartments to rent in central London has been high as well as the demand for long lets across our central London and City offices even during the peak holiday season, notably amongst students where looking for an apartment to rent in Knightsbridge, students are paying £300 – £320pw for a studio or £400 – £500pw for a one bed apartment, while sharers are looking at £600 – £650pw for a two bed – many students prefer to share as they’re able to get more property for their money.
We’ve been seeing strong demand from families relocating before the start of the school term. In Knightsbridge, homes in the catchment area of schools such as Hill House International Junior School, Marlborough Primary School, Knightsbridge School and Francis Holland School are sought-after, as are homes to rent near the Lycee Francais in South Kensington. Families are also busy looking at rental properties in the Hyde Park area and around Notting Hill Gate.
The rental market is moving quickly and tenants are having to make an offer quickly when they see a property they like. Good properties are being snapped up and as ever, the properties that are best presented are letting most quickly. However, we’re regularly receiving plenty of new instructions, so we have good stocks at the moment. In fact, we’ve had a number of new clients move to us recently from larger agents.
Strong demand for apartments to rent in the City, Canary Wharf and Docklands has continued through the summer months, with properties letting quickly and achieving close to their asking rentals. Demand is highest for mid-priced, two bedroom properties (£350 – £450pw) and also one bed properties at around £375pw.
There’s a surge in demand for accommodation to rent in areas like Lewisham, SE13 and other areas that fringe the City such as Bow, Poplar and Canada Water. Tenants are keen to reduce the cost of renting an apartment in East London so they’re happy to move further out to save money. They can rent a one bed apartment in Lewisham for £950 a month whereas a similar property to rent in Canary Wharf costs £1300-£1400 a month. With the commute from Lewisham only three stops on the DLR, they can find equally good yet much cheaper accommodation.
The relocation market continues to strengthen, with executives from the oil industry, large accountancy firms, banks and other financial institutions leading the drive for homes in the City and Canary Wharf. We’re also seeing a substantial increase in the number of UK professionals moving to the City – numbers are at their highest for a couple of years, indicating a possible drive to recruit more home-grown talent.
As ever, presentation is key to letting a property quickly. Tenants will view properties online initially so good presentation and attractive furnishings make all the difference, ensuring a property looks good in property images and videos and making it stand out from others in the same block.
We’ve seen a surge of applicants looking for homes to rent in Hampstead over the summer. Hampstead and Highgate are known for their excellent schools and there’s been a mad rush for properties in the catchment area of good schools such as St Anthony’s School, Devonshire House Preparatory School and Fitzjohn’s Primary School. There’s fierce competition for homes in the catchment area of these schools. With many families looking for a similar type of rental property in Hampstead and Highgate – three or four bedrooms, two bathrooms, a garden, parking and as close as possible to their chosen school, there can often be shortages and this can lead to price rises. Larger family homes (£1000pw+) and three bed apartments (£650-£950) are fuelling this demand and are in short supply.
Unsurprisingly, there’s also been a sharp rise in demand for properties with outside space, even if only a balcony or communal garden. Studios and one bed properties are renting quickly, as are larger family homes. Two bed apartments are moving a little more slowly but those that have two bathrooms are performing better than those with only one as they appeal to professional sharers as well as couples.
There’s high demand from overseas executives and the relocation market is very busy – we’re conducting viewings with relocation agents daily. Banking and finance companies seem to be especially active sending executives on secondment to London.
The student market is very active and we’re receiving regular enquiries from wealthy international students.
We’re finding that many applicants looking for properties to rent in Highgate and Hampstead are looking for somewhere greener with a good villagey feel, however, they want good value for money and are only prepared to move if they find it. Applicants will typically look at around 10 properties before making a decision. As well as executives from overseas, we’re seeing many applicants moving to the area from other parts of London.
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