Neil Smith, head of Paragon’s surveyor department, tells us how the buy-to-let market performed in March, highlighting some localised trends using input from his team of regional surveyors.
“Overall, we have seen a good, stable property market in March, with activity picking up after the Stamp Duty holiday extension announcement at the start of the month. Almost all letting agents report being busy and, in many areas, demand is exceeding supply. A stand-out example of this is South Yorkshire where our regional surveyor says the rental market is ‘generally booming’ and agents are receiving multiple applications for properties across all house types and from all age groups.
“Despite the high demand and low voids widely reported, landlords are actively seeking to keep good tenants with some showing flexibility and resisting rent increases or offering incentives like free Wi-Fi at tenancy renewal. Outside space continues to be an important consideration for tenants. Tenants who may have been happy in a flat or HMO before the pandemic may now be opting for single residential units as these have been identified as property types in demand by our surveyors in East Anglia and the North Midlands, where they are helping to keep the lettings markets buoyant.”
Smith added: “We have seen continued strong demand in commuter towns with rail links to London as city workers switch more to working from home with occasional commutes. Despite this, there is a consensus among landlords and developers that London will continue to attract younger tenants.”