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Build to Rent: A Maturing Market
13th March 2018

The Build to Rent sector is an integral and evolving part of the housing market and has the ability to significantly contribute to reducing the deficit in the UK’s housing supply.

The sector is still relatively small in the UK, but has grown consistently since the 1980s as the number of council houses has reduced and the costs of home ownership have increased.

This trend is supported by the Department for Communities and Local Government’s (DCLG) findings, which indicate that the percentage of owner occupied dwellings in the UK dropped by over 10% between 2001 and 2015 and the number of those renting privately increased by over 100%.

Build to Rent has grown exponentially in recent years with more than £2bn of capital committed to the sector in 2017 and there are now more than 20,000 completed Build to Rent units across the UK. With a further 27,500 Build to Rent units under construction, 58,500 with planning permission and more than £30bn of global capital looking to invest in this sector in the UK, it is clear that there is a clear market acceptance of the advantages of this type of accommodation.

The Unlocking Build to Rent: Who holds the key? report, published by Nexus Planning and Broadway Malyan in 2016, found that almost two thirds of London’s Boroughs made no reference to Build to Rent or included policies that clearly focused on the delivery of affordable housing - with just 24 per cent of Boroughs having positive positions on the sector with policies or guidance relating to Build to Rent.

The report argued that the sector offered London Boroughs the opportunity to form their own development companies, independent from but owned by the council, which could generate a long term revenue stream by using council land to build large-scale Build to Rent schemes.

According to new research, outlined in Build to Rent: A Maturing Market, in the past 12 months, there has been significant progress with the drafting of new planning policy at a number of London Boroughs, either through the adoption of new policy, the review and update of existing policy, consultation on a new draft policy or the publication of a revised evidence base.

In London today there are approximately 55,000 new Build to Rent homes that have either been completed, are under construction or have been granted planning permission. The importance of this unique sector in delivering high quality housing for the capital is now being reflected in planning policy across London.

Download the full report: Build To Rent A Maturing Market

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