Increased demand from tenants

Demand from people across the country seeking rental properties has further increased, according to the August 2020 RICS UK Residential Survey.

The research has also revealed that homes close to green open spaces and with private gardens are expected to become more desirable than ever following the global Covid-19.

According to the survey, the pandemic is expected to cause a lasting shift in the desirability of certain property characteristics, with some 83 per cent of respondents anticipating an increase in demand for homes with gardens over the next two years.

Approximately 79 per cent predict rising demand for properties that are near green space, while a net balance of more than 68 per cent foresee a rise in the desirability of home with more private and less communal outside space.

In the lettings market, the survey showed tenant demand has continued to rise sharply, while landlord instructions were broadly flat following a modest pick-up in July.

Rental growth expectations over the near term have now strengthened in each of the past three months.

The survey also revealed that housing market activity continued to rise in August, as those looking to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday continued their search for a new home.

A net balance of 63 per cent of respondents reported an increase in buyer interest over the month, despite the longer-term view remaining more cautious.

As buyer enquiries continued to rise, new instructions for sales also saw a jump, with survey participants noting an increase in vendors listing property to sell.

The August survey feedback also pointed to a sharp acceleration in house price inflation, with virtually all parts of the UK now seeing prices increase.

The only exception is London, where prices are cited to have remained more or less flat over the past two months.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist says: “The latest RICS survey provides firm evidence of a strong uplift in activity in the housing market which should help support the wider economy gain traction over the coming months.”

He adds: “The results provide a further pointer to more substantive changes taking place in household behaviour in the wake of the pandemic.

“Increased demand for properties with garden and near green spaces has if anything increased since we tested the water in May.”