Top 7 stories this week in housing and property investment: 13 Apr

Going green could help landlords attract more tenants

Environmentally friendly landlords could see themselves in high demand after new research has found that many tenants consider how eco-friendly a building is when choosing a home – especially those who pay higher rent.

More than two fifths of tenants in the UK (42%) say that they take into account how eco-friendly a property is before deciding on where to rent, a survey by Your Move sister company LSL’s PRIsm has found, while this figure rises to half of tenants in London.
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The importance of green credentials seems to be linked to the level of rent paid by tenants, with 63% of those paying £1,351 to £1,600 per month saying that an environmentally friendly home is a top priority when choosing where to rent, compared to just 37% of renters paying £350 a month or less.

The findings reveal that considering the environmental impact of their rental properties is a key way for landlords to attract more tenants in an increasingly competitive environment, particularly as the number of renters across the UK continues to increase as homeownership levels fall.

From April this year, all rental properties across the UK must achieve a minimum EPC rating of E, which is a measure of the energy efficiency of a home and affects the tenant’s utility bills as well as the environment, and this could be set to a minimum of C in the future.

Green space is high on the agenda

Martyn Alderton, national lettings director at Your Move and Reeds Rains, said: “Whether it’s to reduce their energy consumption, save money or make a positive impact on the environment, it’s good to see that tenants consider the ‘greenness’ of a building an important factor in their rental decision.

“As we continue to build more and more homes for our growing population, it’s vital that we do whatever we can to create a more sustainable future for our planet and use our resources as carefully as possible.”

The Your Move survey also found that 32% of renters were interested in a communal garden, while 30% would be happy to pay extra for a vegetable allotment, proving that green space is important to Generation Rent, despite it often coming at a premium in city locations.

In London, renting households can expect to pay as much as 20% more per month if they have a garden, and this is likely to be mirrored in cities such as Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds. Landlords who can offer green space, as well as proof that their properties go some way towards being eco-friendly, may find themselves a much more popular choice for tenants.

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