Those looking to rent homes on the Isle of Wight are facing a tough challenge as the Island’s rental market has shrunk by 82%, according to property site Rightmove.
With many Islanders who are not in a position to buy property searching for homes, the shortage has never been more felt. A new study by Rightmove has revealed the added effect that the so-called staycation boom is having on the rental market across the country.
Amongst the locations seeing the biggest decline in available lettings, seaside and coastal towns such as the Island are seeing their situation become the most acute. Compared to 2 years ago in 2019, there are now 82% less houses available to rent.
Add to this the 376% increase in tenant competition for those properties that are available and it soon becomes clear as to why so many are struggling to find somewhere to call home.
The change in tenant competition is measured by the number of tenants enquiring in an area of Rightmove compared to the number of available properties in that area. On the Isle of Wight, just 34 properties are listed on Rightmove, with estate agents reporting that properties are let almost as soon as they are listed.
Matthew White, director at Hose Rhodes Dickson on The Isle of Wight, said:
“In more than 30 years working in lettings, I’ve never seen a rental market like it is now. Stock levels are reducing year on year, and tenant demand is the greatest it’s ever been.
“The Isle of Wight is in a unique geographical position, and due to many now able to work from home, we’re seeing less ‘accidental landlords’, whereas pre-covid, homeowners could find themselves suddenly needing to commute to the mainland due to a change in job or circumstance, which is reducing a source of the rental properties becoming available.
“A lack of choice and available property also means we’re seeing more tenants staying put. That said, conversely, we’re seeing more investment in property this year, as people look for a greater return on their money, which more often than not, property delivers.”
Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property data, said:
“Landlords in the typical tourist destinations around Britain have been chasing the huge surge in demand for holiday lets this summer, which has led to a temporary drop in the stock available for permanent tenants. However, as the summer holidays are coming to an end, agents are now reporting more landlords turning their attention to longer-term tenants as a more secure and stable option for the rest of the year and into 2022.
“The value of a good tenant should not be underestimated, and with the competition for rental properties in these areas so high right now, it could be a good time for landlords to take stock and consider their best longer-term option.”
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