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Construction of build-to-rent homes increases by nearly 40%

Words: Laura Edgar
Flats / iStock

The number of build-to-rent homes currently under construction in the UK increased by 39 per cent in the year between Q4 2017 and Q4 2018.

This, according to research commission by the British Property Federation (BPF) to Savills, equates to 43,374 build-to-rent homes compared to 31,250 at the end of 2017.

The number of homes completed increased by 29 per cent between Q4 in 2017 and Q4 in 2018, from 22,762 to 29,416. Build-to-rent homes in planning were recorded as 66,718 at the end of 2018, 10 per cent more than the 60,794 at the end of 2017. In planning statistics includes sites that have been identified for build-to-rent by local authorities and developers, which stands at 22,642.

In total, there are now 139,508 build-to-rent homes complete, under construction and in planning across the UK

The research notes that, for the first time, the total number of completed build-to-rent homes across the UK regions has caught up with the total in London; 14,615 completed homes in the regions compared to 14,801 in the capital. In terms of construction, there are 24,010 home under construction in the regions compared to 19,304 in London.

Ian Fletcher, director of real estate policy at the BPF, commented: “With the revised NPPF asking local authorities to identify how many new rental homes their respective areas need, the future should remain bright for build-to-rent. This has never before been enshrined in UK planning policy and will only add to the growing number of local authorities that are seeing the benefits of build-to-rent in adding much-needed housing supply across the UK."

The research comes after changes were made in 2018 to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), which now specifically references build-to-rent homes to provide guidance to local authorities when dealing with planning applications from the sector.

Commenting on the research, Ashley Mitchell, partner and head of housing at law firm Gowling WLG, said: "While this is good news for one element of UK housing supply, it underlines a growing dynamic in the market.  BTR appeals largely to a generation of professionals who view their home as a consumer product.  Home ownership is becoming analogous to car ownership – the value is in the experience, not the investment.”  

Read more:

Build-to-rent units on the increase, suggests research 

10,000 build-to-rent homes under construction in UK regions

Image credit | iStock