Data from Countrywide’s Hamptons International agency suggests that the number of second homes that were rented rather than purchased last year was 13,680 - a record high.
The agency says this is the latest rise in a decade-long trend - back in 2017 there were just 5,800 such homes let.
The average rent of a second home reached £1,060 pcm in Great Britain last year. This is 24 per cent more than the average rent of a primary home in Britain.
Specifically in London this rises to £2,030 pcm with many second home renters using their London rental property as a pied-à-terre.
London has the third highest proportion of rented second homes, behind the South West in first place and Scotland in second.
Six out of the top 10 second home rental hotspots are located in the South East or South West.
Windsor and Maidenhead top the list, with 14 per cent of rental homes let as second homes. The more rural areas of Gloucester and Tewkesbury in the South West follow with 11 per cent and six per cent of rental homes let as second homes.
“The number of people renting second homes has reached a record high. The additional stamp duty surcharge on second home purchases introduced in April 2016, increased buyers' upfront costs and resulted in more people deciding to rent a second home rather than buy” explains Aneisha Beveridge, analyst at Hamptons International.
“The places second home renters are choosing include a mix of town and country. Second home rental hotspots reflect today’s lifestyle choices from the pied-à-terres in towns and cities, close to work, schools and all the amenities that city life has to offer, to rural and coastal locations perfect for escaping the trappings of a busy urban life.”