tenants rental homes property investment north west

Four fifths of UK tenants are happy with their landlords

The majority of tenants in the private rented sector are satisfied with their situations. Is the sector improving as a long-term accommodation option?

As the number of households living within the private rented sector continues to rise, so does the level of satisfaction among the tenants living in it, according to a recent report from Money.co.uk.

It discovered that the majority of today’s tenants, based on a 2022 survey, are largely happy with their landlords. As the sector continues to provide essential accommodation for millions of households, this result sheds a light on the positives of living in a rental home.

More than half (52%) of tenants surveyed revealed they were satisfied with their landlords, while almost a third (29%) said they were very satisfied; a total of 81%. Just 7% said they were not satisfied while 1% said they were very unsatisfied with their landlords.

Tenants find landlords responsive

There are undoubtedly ‘rogue’ landlords that exist within the private rented sector, who let out poor quality properties, don’t respond to tenants’ issues and sometimes don’t abide by legal and regulatory requirements.

However, while the government’s crackdown on the sector over recent years hasn’t always been well-received, one positive to come from it has arguably been an improvement in the conditions within the sector. What’s more, tenants now often expect more from their rental homes, leading to the advent of build-to-rent.

Money.co.uk’s study also looked at how tenants were treated by their landlords. It found that the majority of renters (43%) said they tend to wait between two and three days for a response when they contact their landlord. A quarter (26%) said they would hear back within one day.

Responsiveness is a vital part of being a successful landlord, particularly for those who self-manage their properties. Many investors, particularly those with multiple properties, opt to use a managing agent who will deal with communications and issues with the tenants.

Dominant rental sector

London has the highest percentage of rental properties compared with owner-occupied homes, but Money.co.uk’s study also looked at the top three towns and cities in the UK for rental property outside the capital.

It found that Manchester in the north west of England has the highest proportion of properties in the country after London that are privately rented, at 31.6%.

The report notes: “One of the north’s major cities, Manchester has a younger population than the national average and has undergone considerable redevelopment in the last 20 years.”

Manchester is often noted as one of the most promising areas for property investment due to the strength of its buy-to-let market and huge demand from tenants, alongside strong rental yields.

Next on the list is Brighton & Hove, where 31.11% of homes are privately rented. As the report points out, the city has a number of built-up areas which leads to higher tenant numbers.

Down the road from Brighton, Hastings has the third highest number of rental homes compared with owner-occupied properties, at 29.82%.

How to be a good landlord

Money.co.uk’s report ends with a list of tips on how to be a good landlord in today’s competitive rental market.

Communication and availability, as the survey shows, are the top qualities of a good landlord, says the report, which notes the importance of making yourself easily contactable to your tenants.

Hand in hand with communication, addressing issues quickly is also top of the agenda. The report notes: “Establish trust by making sure you are readily available to act quickly and respond to issues.

“If something legitimately cannot be fixed quickly, at least get the process moving as fast as possible and communicate this to your tenants. It may be your property but it’s your tenant’s home.”

It is important for all property investors to budget for repairs that will inevitably crop up during ownership of a rental home.

“You should never put off repair work because you cannot afford to pay for it, as tenants expect you to be responsible for property management. Equally, make sure you hire professionals when needed, especially for elements where regulatory requirements exist, such as gas and electricity maintenance.”

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