We had a visit from BBC’s Panorama to get some insight from our property experts on the current state of the lettings market.
Lettings Manager, Tom Wild, and MD Luke Gidney, were interviewed as part of Panorama’s “Surviving the Cost of Living Crisis” documentary, which broadcast on 21st November 2022.
With inflation rising to its highest rate for 30 years and energy bills spiralling, households across the country are having to make do with less. The programme sought to look at how people are coping in the current cost of living crisis.
The huge demand for rental properties, combined with a lack of stock, means that it’s becoming increasingly challenging for people to find rental homes. Filming in our Horsforth branch, we were asked about what it’s really like for tenants trying to find homes to rent in the current market.
“We are seeing incredible demand for professional rental accommodation, with dozens of people competing for properties. ” says Branch Manager, Tom Wild.
It’s never been so busy. The moment we list a property, the phone rings off the hook and we get multiple enquiries to view.
“We offer block bookings, to give as many people as possible an opportunity to see the property, but we have to cap viewings at 6-8 a day to give people a fair chance to apply. When multiple applications are received simultaneously, it becomes a tough decision for the property owner. Ultimately, there is only so much stock available and therefore competition is fierce. Matching people to their perfect properties is the best part of our job, so it’s never a good feeling when tenants have to miss out.”
Demand is being driven by a combination of First Time Buyers pulling out of purchases, people not wanting to move, landlords selling their portfolios, and stock levels simply being far too low – which all together makes for a very challenging market.
As demand increases, so can rents. “Tenants can find themselves priced out of the market” says MD, Luke Gidney, “which is why we are seeing an uplift of tenants looking for houseshares, with people opting to take rooms in a shared home in order to help spread the cost of living.”
At HOP, we advise our landlords to give more value for money, wherever possible, by making improvements and offering better presented properties. We’d also encourage any landlords with vacant properties to contact our team to arrange a consultation and appraisal of their property, as we have plenty of tenants waiting to move.
Catch the full documentary “Panorama: Surviving The Cost Of Living Crisis” on BBC iPlayer
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