Renters are no longer as keen on studio flats after life in lockdown

Renters are no longer as keen on studio flats after life in lockdown

10/14/2020

Life amid coronavirus has massively changed what we want when it comes to where we live.

While previous studies have shown that we now have different priorities for our dream house post-lockdown (a garden and space for a home office top the list, unsurprisingly), new research shows that actual type of home we want in the first place has changed fairly dramatically, too.

This time last year, studio flats were the most in-demand type of property for renters, according to Rightmove.

In 2020, renters are most keen to find a two-bedroom house.

This may be due to the move towards home-working, which has made us crave divided space within the home for clear boundaries between work and relaxation. After all, it’s tricky to proper unwind when you can see your laptop’s glowing screen on the sofa, tempting you into doing more work. More space or just a second bedroom could allow for a home office – or at least somewhere to retreat when your partner is on yet another Zoom call.

Rightmove calculated the popularity of different types of property by comparing the number of inquiries from tenants with the volume of such properties available.

The most in-demand types of properties for renters:

In 2020:

In 2019:

They found that the most in-demand property type is now a two-bedroom house, followed by a two-bedroom bungalow, then a three-bedroom house.

Studio flats now come in eighth, whereas last year they took the top spot.

As a result of changing demands when it comes to renting, landlords are being advised to change the way they style and market homes, to ensure any properties are seen as viable options for both work and relaxation.

That may mean turning a second bedroom into a home office, or really drumming up excitement for a decent garden.

Rightmove’s commercial director Miles Shipside said: ‘Landlords with a large portfolio of studio flats may find they need to accept lower rents than over the past few years, although let’s not forget that overall rents have gone up by £100 per month outside London and £140 in the capital over the past five years, so those with a longer-term view will still be able to make some good returns.

‘It will be the accidental landlords that have one property that need a good agent more than ever, to promote the attractive attributes of their buy-to-lets.

‘I’ve heard from some agents that they’re now advising their landlords to turn part of the living room into a work-from-home space, or offering to install high-speed broadband for tenants as an added incentive.

‘The rise in demand for properties that have more space and that typically have higher rents is helping push up average rents to new record highs.’

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