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Tenant happiness on the rise as more opt to rent long-term

A study of over 3,000 tenants has found that an increasing number of renters are 'very happy' with their living situation.

LSL Corporate Client Department's 2017 Tenant Survey found that 32% of renters claim to be 'very happy', up from 28% last year.

A further 37% indicated that they are 'happy', increasing marginally from 36% in 2016.

Just 4% of tenants said they were 'very unhappy', down from 6%, while 7% said they were 'unhappy', down from 9%.

LSL says the increased satisfaction among tenants is due to a reduction in frustrations with maintenance, fees and restrictions.

The report also highlights growth in the long-term rental market with 33% of tenants having rented for six years or longer, up from 29% in 2016.

The study splits renters into four groups: Younger Independents, Struggling Savers, Moving Up and Reconciled with Renting.

The Struggling Savers and Moving Up groups are most likely to be renting due to a lack of deposit or difficulty getting a mortgage and so are less inclined to see renting as a lifestyle choice.

The other two groups - Young Independents and Reconciled with Renting - are on the other hand more likely to appreciate the flexibility that renting offers.

The condition of the rental property and value for money were the two most important dealbreakers for the tenants surveyed.

These were followed by good communications with landlords and letting agents and the overall quality of the landlord.

Meanwhile, 28% of tenants said they'd pay more to be allowed to keep pets and 21% said they'd pay more for high speed internet.

The majority of the tenants surveyed rent unfurnished accommodation, 56% are aged under 35 and 41% have children.

"The results show that the vast majority of the sector’s customers are happy, but there is no room for complacency," says Ian Fletcher, director of policy (Real Estate) at the British Property Federation.

"The rental sector’s customer base is changing, for example with far more families, and what customers want is changing too." 

"The private rented sector can’t divorce itself from these wider social, economic and technological changes and the impact that is having on how people want to lead their lives," he adds.

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