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Over half of landlords buy local property

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More than half of buy-to-let landlords and property investors live within 10 miles of their rental properties, according to analysis from Countrywide Residential Lettings.
Over half of landlords buy local property

The UK’s largest lettings agency said over two thirds of landlords in the North East and North West live within 10 miles of their rental property. The number of landlords living within 25 miles of their properties is highest in the North East at 83%, followed by the North West at 81%, East Midlands at 71% and London at 60% of landlords.

The vast majority of landlords own just one property, with just 6% of property investors owning more than one property, dropping to 4% in London.

In London, more than one in five investors live more than 100 miles away from their property, twice the national average. However, in more sparsely populated areas like Wales or the East of England, the proportion of landlords living between 10 and 25 miles away is the largest in the country.

The average monthly rent in the UK in February 2014 was £861, up 0.2% month-on-month and 3.1% year-on-year. However, seven out of ten regions saw rental falls, with Yorkshire and Humber seeing the greatest decrease, down 6%, followed by the North East, down 3.1%.

Central London and the South West, saw the biggest increase in average monthly rents, with the greatest month-on-month increase of 4.1%.

Over the past 12 months, average monthly rents have increased in 8 out of 10 regions, with Scotland seeing the most significant increase up 9.6% year-on-year to £626pcm, followed by Central London up 8.5% to £2,630pcm. The West Midlands and Yorkshire and Humberside saw a year-on-year decrease in average monthly rents, down 6.2% and 0.7% respectively.

In February, rent arrears fell in each part of the country.

Nick Dunning, group commercial director at Countrywide, said: “Location is key to buy-to-let investment and as the findings show, landlords tend to purchase in areas they are knowledgeable of in terms of property prices, monthly rents and the local amenities that attract tenants to an area. Given 94% of UK landlords own a single rental property, many choose to take a hands on approach in regards to management, so favour being closer to their rental accommodation.

“According to DCLG’s English Housing Survey, in 2012-13 the private rented sector overtook the social rented sector to become the second largest tenure in England after owner occupiers. With the private rented sector continuing to grow, there is increasing need for more good quality rented accommodation.”

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