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There are seven times as many renters as there are available rooms in London now

When will the madness end?

India Lawrence
Written by
India Lawrence

Renting in London is officially Really Bad. If you’re thinking about moving house soon, maybe don’t, because there are now seven people for every one room going in the capital.

According to data from SpareRoom, the number of renters looking for rooms has tripled since the start of 2021, while listings have declined over the same period, meaning there are now seven times the amount of people looking than there are rooms available. There are currently 106,000 prospective tenants compared to just 15,000 available rooms. 

Yolande Barnes, chair of University College London’s Bartlett Real Estate Institute, told Bloomberg the spike in demand is partly down to young professionals and students returning to the city after a period of working from home and staying with parents during Covid. 

‘The archetypal young professional, who worked at home from their parents’ place and saved money on rent, is now going back to living in real places,’ she said. ‘There’s an element of pent-up demand.’

Rupert Hunt, chief executive officer at SpareRoom, added that turmoil in the UK economy, down to inflation, high interest rates and Kwasi Kwarteng’s disastrous mini-budget, means people who previously might have had plans to buy will now ‘be renting for longer’. 

Over the past few months we’ve all been horrified by stories of no-fault evictions, revolting rent hikes and insanely over-subscribed house viewings. We’re just wondering, when will the madness end?

Could there be a rent freeze? Sadiq Khan wants one

8 ways to make renting less of a total nightmare.

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