Hot weather combined with a lockdown can only mean one thing - a record number of searches for rental properties with gardens.
Rightmove says that although total rental searches initially dropped 35 per cent during the lockdown, a recovery of sorts has taken place and the search volumes are now 20 per cent down on the norm for this time of year.
However, there’s predictably rapid growth in the number of searches for rental properties with gardens.
Over the past week searches by renters looking for a garden are almost double compared to the first week of lockdown. Over the longer-term they are now 16 per cent higher compared to the average seen in January and February, and are also up 26 per cent on the same week last year.
Total stock available to rent is up 2.6 per cent in the second two weeks of lockdown compared to the first two weeks, as some agents re-list properties they’ve let out previously in order to line up new tenants for when lockdown ends.
Some agents have video of their rental stock, and some prospective tenants are happy to secure a property and start an application and referencing process now to save time according to Rightmove.
During the lockdown some renters are considering moving to places with a scenic river or a coastal town, based on the top ten biggest increases in searches comparing the first two weeks of lockdown with the second two weeks.
“Having a garden is often a rarity for many rental properties in larger cities, and so it may be that during lockdown people are rethinking their needs and location and are searching for some outdoor space and tranquillity” explains Rightmove commercial director Miles Shipside.
“Agents report they’re helping their landlords line up new tenants ready to physically view properties when restrictions are lifted and we’re also seeing a lower but steady level of tenant referencing taking place. Those properties with a garden are likely to be able to fill any landlord voids more quickly post lockdown.”