The data also revealed that at opposing ends of the scale, landlords looking for a rental bargain are more likely to search for a large property with 7 bedrooms than a more compact 1 bedroom flat.
The appeal of larger properties lies in their security as long-term investments. Professional investors with large portfolios of small properties were left burnt during the property crash when tenants were unable to meet rents by themselves. By renting out properties with more bedrooms, landlords are able to spread the risk by either renting out rooms to different tenants, or focusing on the more stable family rental market, which offers security through longer rental terms.
The majority of searches on the website are for terraced houses with more than one bedroom (37%). The least popular properties are bungalows (3%) and maisonettes (1%).
London was the most searched for property location, receiving twice as many searches (18%) than Lancashire (8%). These statistics indicate that property investors are attracted by the rental yield potential of the capital, with the average 3 bedroomed property receiving an average of £2,470* a month in rent**,
Other than London, the North West attracted the most attention, with Lancashire (including Manchester, Oldham and Blackpool), Cheshire (including footballer’s favourites Chester and Wilmslow) and Merseyside (Liverpool) all featured in the top ten searches.
Dominic Toller, Managing Director said:
“We are seeing the beginning of a new buy to let age, where landlords build portfolios made up of larger houses, rather than simply one bedroom flats. The saturation of the buy to let market by small city based apartments, and the subsequent problems of low occupancy have taught landlords to spread their rental risk and engage a different type of tenant. Smart landlords are searching for chain free properties, as their rental yields are on average 2% higher than on the open market. We have yet to see any impact of the upcoming HMO legislation upon our search data.
“By concentrating on quality rather than quantity, landlords set themselves at the forefront of the buy-to-let market.”
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