Commuter towns are in demand across the UK, says SpareRoom survey


According to the SpareRoom’s latest Quarterly Rental Index, rental prices in commuter towns are steadily increasing as UK renters choose to make the move out of larger cites.

As London rents finally start to fall, there’s a clear trend of people moving out to commuter towns around key cities across the UK. Towns around London, Birmingham and Manchester are all showing growth, as people opt for a more affordable rent paired with a relatively easy commute. Rents in these towns are increasing but are a long way off the dizzying heights of London, even with the
capital’s falling rents.

Rents in the have shot up across the board, signalling that Birmingham, as the country’s second city, is on the up. Recent news that its burgeoning tech scene secured a financial boost is helping as affordable rents are no use without new jobs.

Towns such as Derby, Coventry, West Bromwich and Wolverhampton have seen room rents increase. However, all are still considerably lower than the average rent of £452 (excl. London) in the UK. Furthermore, demand for flatshares is increasing too – in Tamworth there are three people competing for every room.
Southend-on-Sea has become one of the most desirable places to live according to SpareRoom’s most recent figures, as the seaside town has seen rents increase by a whopping nine per cent in the last year, shooting up to an average of £485 a month. Despite that, rents are still considerably more affordable than the capital’s average of £748 and, with a typical commute /me of about 50 minutes into London, it’s proving a popular alternative.

Monthly rents in the North are still on the up – both the North East and North West have seen three per cent increases year on year. As transport links are set to improve, and Hull claims its crown as the UK’s capital of culture 2017, it’s likely this trend will continue.

With a flourishing science and tech scene demand is even increasing beyond the city centres, Salford was number one in the top 10 post towns for the highest demand in Q4 2016 with five people competing for every room.

In the last year London has seen room rents decrease by one per cent to £748 per month. Whilst the city is experiencing a decline, rents are still far from affordable, with one in four Londoners spending over half their salary on rent. As a result commuter towns are looking more acractive and cost effective to achieve that work life balance.

“As London rents finally fall we’re seeing rent rises start to ripple out across the country as renters look for more affordable alternatives. The South East is the obvious next step but it’s interesting to see Wales and Northern Ireland also recording above average rises,” explains SpareRoom director Mac Hutchinson.

“As people move for cheaper rents, this could be the start of a big shif towards commuting, not just in London and the South East but in towns across the Midlands and the North.” he continued. “With areas such as Bradford, Coventry and Derby seeing significant rent rises there are signs that London and the South East are finally reaching an affordability tipping point.”

Source: SpareRoom

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