In Brief

London renters swap cramped flats for space in suburbia

New figures show tenants are leaving Britain's cities and looking to upsize

Lockdown has driven a “race to suburbia” among renters, with tenants in a rush to upsize and move out of cities, new research has found. 

Since lockdown eased, 34% of tenants who have moved chose a property with at least one extra bedroom, compared with 25% in the first three months of 2020, according to the estate agency Hamptons International. Across the country, the average rental bill increased by 23% to add 1.4 bedrooms.

A quarter or rental moves between May and August were from a flat to a house, up from 16% in the first three months of the year. 

Renters are also moving out of cities: in August, tenant applications in cities were down 23%.

The trend for upsizing is most pronounced in the South East, probably “driven by movers from the capital”, says The Telegraph.

The number of Liverpool residents looking for a village lifestyle has also increased dramatically, rising by 275% compared with a year earlier, according to Rightmove figures published by the BBC. In Edinburgh, village inquiries were up 205%, and in Birmingham 186%.

Across the UK, inquiries in June and July about switching city life for a village home jumped 126% on the same period last year. 

The trend has meant average rents in London have also fallen during lockdown. In July, The Guardian reported that rental prices in zone 2 of the capital were down by 8% from February. In the heart of the city, where more real estate is taken up by offices which have largely stood empty since March, prices were down by 18%. 

Recommended

The top 20 universities in the UK
uni-of-cambridge.jpg
In Brief

The top 20 universities in the UK

Tech tiffs, shipping shortages and mammoth science projects
Former Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes
Podcast

Tech tiffs, shipping shortages and mammoth science projects

Prince Andrew accused of ‘playing hide and seek’ to avoid sex assault lawsuit
Prince Andrew
The latest on . . .

Prince Andrew accused of ‘playing hide and seek’ to avoid sex assault lawsuit

Gove’s task to put ‘meat on the bones’ of ‘levelling-up’ agenda
Michael Gove
Behind the scenes

Gove’s task to put ‘meat on the bones’ of ‘levelling-up’ agenda

Popular articles

Doctor says we should not sleep naked because of flatulent spraying
The feet of a person sleeping in a bed
Tall Tales

Doctor says we should not sleep naked because of flatulent spraying

World’s most extreme weather events in 2021
Wildfire in Greece
In pictures

World’s most extreme weather events in 2021

The man tasked with putting a price on 9/11’s lost lives
Kenneth Feinberg at a Congressional hearing
Profile

The man tasked with putting a price on 9/11’s lost lives

The Week Footer Banner