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Home NewsRental market update The London rental market – March 2017

The London rental market – March 2017

Demand for rental accommodation in London is high and the market is buoyant. There have been many high-profile developments launching over the last few weeks, probably the most exciting and eagerly anticipated of which is Battersea Power Station where we have received numerous new instructions already.

Presentation is particularly important when so many properties in a development come onto the rental market at the same time. Most applicants search online for a rental property and already know what they wish to view when they get in contact with us. Furnished properties are known to receive the most clicks but with similar online property descriptions and only thumbnail images to click on, the image must catch the eye immediately – basic furnishings may not be enough.The apartment has to be different to attract a tenant quickly so we always suggest using a professional furnishing package provider who can advise on the right furnishings to attract the kind of tenant you may be looking for.

Central London (Knightsbridge, Kensington, Hyde Park/Paddington)

16th floor apartment at Nine Elms Point

Enquiries have really picked up during the last few weeks at our Knightsbridge branch and demand is good across the spectrum – from studios letting for £330 – £350 per week to one bedroom apartments letting for £430 to £500 per week. Demand is equally good at the higher end of the market with rental properties such as the three bed at The Knightsbridge situated near Harrods letting recently for £3,500 per week. The popularity of new developments continues, with many applicants preferring them for their high spec and amenities. We are receiving a lot of new instructions at new builds including Vista, Chelsea Bridge in Battersea and Pinto Tower, part of Nine Elms Point nearby Vauxhall Tube station where demand is picking up.

In Kensington, demand is steady too with applicants searching mainly for modern apartments with a high-spec, contemporary finish. Most are looking for one or two bedroom properties in the £400-£800 price bracket. There is not a great deal of interest in period properties at the moment, with most tenants preferring the convenience of a new home that will be easy to live in and need less maintenance. Our Hyde Park branch in Sussex Place is also seeing an upturn in demand, particularly for affordably-priced one bedroom apartments. Developments in Paddington Basin remain as popular as ever, particularly with young professionals keen to be close to central London and its many bars, restaurants and other attractions.

South West central London (Nine Elms and Imperial Wharf)

Two bed at Battersea Power Station

The most exciting news in South West central London is that the first phase of apartments at Battersea Power Station are now completing. Our Nine Elms Point branch expects to receive 50 new instructions here by the summer, with one bedroom apartments achieving £475 per week (£550 per week if they have a river view) and two beds achieving upwards of £670 per week (£800 per week with river view). There is also a lot of interest in Battersea Exchange where rents are a little lower – £430-£450 per week – so appeal to applicants with a slightly lower budget. There is a real buzz to the local rental market now and these launches are attracting many tenants to the area for the first time. All our landlords are opting to have their apartments professionally furnished (often with a furnishing pack) as they know how important it is for their property to stand out. With so many properties becoming available at once, presentation needs to have a real ‘wow’ factor as many applicants will decide on a property by viewing it online so its appeal needs to be instant. Rental demand remains very good at Imperial Wharf and Chelsea Creek, a perennial favourite with London’s professionals. Studios, one and two bedroom apartments are letting quickly and we continue to receive plenty of new instructions so have good stocks to meet demand.

West London (Hammersmith, Ealing, Kew/Brentford)

Heritage Walk at Kew Bridge West

The West London rental market remains buoyant, again boosted by the area’s stunning new developments which continue to attract applicants keen to move west in the search for affordably priced rental accommodation. At Fulham Reach in Hammersmith, there is high demand for two and three bedroom apartments and we are seeing increasing numbers of applicants making enquiries about homes here. An interesting trend is that we are also seeing growing numbers of families moving to the development and they are looking for unfurnished, two bedroom apartments which is the most popular type of property we have at the moment. The next phase, Faulkner House, is launching now and we have a waiting list of applicants ready to move in as soon as possible. In Ealing demand is good and we see the same ‘ripple’ effect here too, as increasingly, young professionals look for affordability as a priority, boosted by the attractive local area and good transport links to central London. At Kew Bridge demand has also been good with enquiries coming in steadily and we are looking forward to the imminent completion of the latest phase, Heritage Walk which is generating a lot of interest, with one bedroom apartments starting at £390+ per week and two bedroom apartments at £555+ per week.

North/North West London (Beaufort Park, Hampstead and Highgate)

Our Beaufort Park branch is seeing good demand for rental properties, with enquiry levels picking up noticeably as the weather improves. The recent launch of apartments at Golding House means we have good stocks available – properties are letting quickly with one bedroom apartments achieving £320 – £340 per week and two bedroom apartments £420 – £450 per week. We are finding increasing numbers of applicants relocating to London from overseas and rather than head straight for central London, they are often now investigating other parts of London such as Colindale where there has been a lot of regeneration in recent years. The area is often recommended to them by friends and they can find apartments offering a high spec and good amenities at more affordable prices while the easy commute to central London is another advantage.

In Hampstead, the market is also busy although we are a little low on stocks of some types of property and are actively seeking new instructions. The relocation market is active and we have been helping quite a few families moving to London from overseas, mainly looking for high-end, five bedroom properties in the £1400-£1500 per week price bracket. We are also seeing many families moving to Hampstead from other parts of London, due to the area’s excellent schools. Renewal levels are high at the moment and over the last few weeks, we saw all but one existing tenant renew their tenancy. Our Highgate branch is busy with applicants looking for one, two and three bedroom properties, typically renting for between £300 and £800 per week. There is steady demand from relocation agents looking on behalf of applicants both from overseas and other parts of the UK. As ever, many applicants prefer the high spec of new developments such as Highbury Square and Woodberry Park.

City, Docklands and East London (Canary Wharf, Wapping and the City)

London Dock, Wapping

Demand for rental properties in East London remains strong and we continue to see new developments launching, generating further interest from professionals looking to move East in search of good value and high spec properties. Rapidly improving transport links mean tenants can now move further out where they can find well-priced rental homes. One of the most exciting developments in Canary Wharf is Royal Wharf and we have been receiving a lot of enquiries for properties here which are letting for upwards of £320 per week for a one bed and over £400 per week for a two bed. We are handling a lot of new instructions here for landlords but stock levels remain good. Also attracting interest is Canary Gateway in Limehouse – we have had a good response to properties here where studios are letting for £275 per week, one bedroom apartments for upwards of £320 per week and two bedroom apartments over £390 per week. Phase one of London Dock in Wapping completes this month and we already have quite a few tenants registering to take a look at this stunning development. The first apartments are letting now and demand looks set to be very high as more properties become available. With 22,000 sq ft of leisure facilities, this development is definitely a game changer in terms of what many tenants now look for and expect in a home. In the City, we are seeing many one bedroom apartments coming onto the market which until recently, had been quite scarce. Many of these have previously been used as serviced or short-let accommodation but with many local authorities now imposing more stringent regulations on this type of property, many landlords are now returning to renting them out on long term tenancies instead. While this is good news for tenants in that there is now a greater choice of one bedroom flats to rent in the City, this does mean that rental prices are softening so this is something for landlords to recognise.

South East London (Surrey Quays and Greenwich)

Two bed at Kidbrooke Village

The South East London rental market is buoyant, with the final phases of apartments at Surrey Quays – Mariner’s Place and Endeavour House, due to be released soon. This is sparking huge interest from applicants and keeping us very busy. One bedroom apartments are expected to achieve £350+ per week and two bedroom apartments around £430 per week so offer good value to renters. South East London’s area’s major success story, Kidbrooke Village, on the borders of Greenwich and Blackheath, goes from strength to strength and with a good choice of properties available at the moment, this is a good time for applicants looking for an affordably-priced, well-presented property. Manhattan apartments are achieving £275+ per week and one beds £300+ per week. A little further out but similarly priced, Royal Arsenal Riverside is another popular choice for renters, again thanks to its good transport links and high-spec apartments.

If you have a property to let in any of these areas, or would like a free no-obligation rental valuation of your property please do get in touch with us. For more London rental market news and updates, subscribe to our newsletter.


About the Author

For 40 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