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Private rental market: is renting really the future?

Stephen Henesy

CEO

22 May 2023

The private rental market has seen significant growth in recent years, with more people than ever choosing to rent rather than buy their homes. In fact, 19 percent of the UK’s households – over 4.4 million1– are privately rented.

This continuing shift has sparked a debate about whether the rental market is the true future of housing. Renting offers tenants many benefits, including flexibility, however it’s not without its challenges in terms of control over the property and long term stability.

The dynamic presents a huge opportunity for letting agents, as their role becomes vital to offer expertise in creating a positive experience for both landlords and tenants.

Why do people choose to rent?

It’s a huge misconception that tenants only rent because they are not in the financial position to buy a property. More and more people are making a conscious decision to not become homeowners, finding the appeal in not being fixed to the commitment.

Flexibility

Renting offers the benefit of a shorter commitment, with 12 month fixed period generally the standard minimum. This appeals to people who have not settled, whether it’s due to work that needs them to relocate, or not making a decision on a location they want to remain in the long term.

Affordability

While rent costs are on the rise, in many areas it is still much cheaper to rent than to buy – especially in expensive markets such as city centres.

Renters can select a convenient location for them within their monthly budget, without the costs associated with home ownership, such as insurance and maintenance.

Changing attitudes

Homeownership was once considered a key milestone in adulthood, however attitudes towards traditional paths have changed. Creating a family unit is no longer an obligation for many, who prefer the flexibility of a child-free lifestyle, and renting over buying is a part of this. The freedom allows people more opportunities in career development, travel and their social lives.

Letting agents’ role in the future of renting

As the rental market evolves, the role of letting agents become more important. With huge demand and constant updates to legislation, landlords can become overwhelmed with managing properties and remaining compliant. There are many ways letting agents can become an essential part of the private renting process.

Expertise and streamlining

Letting agents play a key role in providing support to both landlords and tenants, guiding them through the rental process and ensuring an ideal match for both parties.

Letting agents also use services to streamline the move in process, staying up to date with the latest methods of managing properties efficiently and accurately. With access to Helpthemove, over 1,000 agents across the UK make move-ins easy, with utility notification to take the stress away from tenants and landlords.

Customer service

Being the go-between for landlords and tenants, letting agents are regularly the middle party that ensures landlords entrust their property to someone, and tenants have flexibility to make the property feel like home. Every landlord has different levels of flexibility when it comes to renting, and it’s up to the landlord to deliver customer service to tenants, making them feel more satisfied with their experience and remain in the property beyond their fixed term.

The future of renting

While renting offers many benefits such as flexibility, affordability, and freedom from maintenance responsibilities, it also presents challenges such as lack of control over the property and less stability. However, letting agents are absolutely vital to managing these challenges on behalf of landlords.

By providing essential property management services and improving the rental experience for tenants, letting agents can make renting a more attractive option for those seeking flexibility and convenience. Letting agents can also help landlords navigate the evolving rental landscape by adapting to new technologies and trends.

To find out more about how Helpthemove supports letting agents with streamlining tenant move-ins, get in touch today.

1. EHS 19/20 PRS Report

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