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London’s Commuter Belt Sees the Biggest Increase in Rental Rates

A new study has found that areas on the outskirts of London have been subject to the highest rental growth in the UK in the final quarter of 2015.

A new study has found that areas on the outskirts of London have been subject to the highest rental growth in the UK in the final quarter of 2015.

Rising rents in London have seen more tenants move from the city to locations that offer a greater balance between travel and housing costs.


Locations such as Swindon, Bristol and Reading, which have seen an influx of new residents moving from the capital, saw the highest year-on-year growth during Q4 2015.


The study, conducted by SpareRoom.co.uk, analysed 400,000 adverts posted on their room rental site over the course of three months and compared year-on-year prices differences. The study found that London rents increased by just 3.48% compared to a 5.5% increase across the UK.


Outside of the capital, the most expensive towns and cities to live in are Reading and Oxford, where the average rents stand at £548 and £537 per room per month respectively. The most expensive location overall was Esher in Surrey, where tenants can expect to pay an average of £641 per room per month.


At the other end of the scale, Belfast and Bradford offered commuters an average room rate of £269 and £294 per month respectively, with the Yorkshire town of Dewsbury offering the lowest rate, at just £256.


To measure demand for rooms in each location, SpareRoom.co.uk compared the number of available rooms per city and found that throughout 2015’s final quarter there were 102,364 rooms in need of tenants in London. Elsewhere in the UK, Birmingham had a supply of 4,365 rooms and Manchester had an availability of 3,186.


Commenting on the report, director of SpareRoom.co.uk, Matt Hutchinson said: ‘We either need to drastically increase supply in London or start creating more jobs in other areas of the UK to spread the demand for housing more widely.’


With news that the construction of the HS2 high speed railway and the cross-London Crossrail project, commuting time to London will be substantially reduced from cities such as Birmingham, Manchester and Reading. The introduction of improved transport links is expected to see rents in these locations continue to rise as Londoners seek more affordable accommodation.

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