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UK private rental sector now bigger than many national GDP figures

Anyone underestimating the size of the UK’s growing private rental sector ought to think again - new research shows its value is now larger than the gross domestic product of 30 countries and several FTSE-100 companies.

Research commissioned by PropTech firm Bunk - which markets a rental app handling advertising, tenant referencing and management of properties to let - finds that there are now just over 5.2m private tenants in the UK. 

When multiplying the number of tenants in each county of the UK by the average annual rental cost, the estimated annual value of rental payments in the private sector is a huge £51.9 billion.


Tenants financial contribution to the UK economy is larger than the GDP of Myanmar (£51.8 billion) and even affluent Luxembourg (£48.1 billion) as well as countries as varied as Panama, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Bulgaria and Croatia. 

The UK rental sector’s contribution to the national economy also surpasses the commercial might of a number of FTSE 100 companies.

Vodafone, Lloyds, National Grid and Barclays all have market capitalisations well below the rental sector’s annual contribution to the UK.

“With rents increasing and an acute shortage of properties being built for sale and to rent, we will surely see this upward trend climb further in the future - great for landlords, not as good for beleaguered tenants” says Tom Woollard, Bunk’s co-founder.


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