Grainger, one of the biggest forces in the UK’s Build To Rent sector, says it has proved the resilience of the sector during the Coronavirus crisis by increasing rental income.
The firm said it earned £37m in rent in the six months to the beginning of April - an increase of 27 per cent on the same period last year, with 95 per cent of rent collected in March and 94 per cent of rent collected in April despite the lockdown.
It is continuing work on a 9,000-unit pipeline of BTR properties, with all of its nine construction sites “open and active”.
In a statement to shareholders it says the lettings market remained active, “albeit at lower levels” - however, recent weeks have seen a pick-up in business.
BTR rental growth on Grainger properties was 3.4 per cent over the year - only two per cent of customers have indicated affordability issues because of Coronavirus and fewer than one per cent have signed up to rent deferral repayment plans.
Chief executive Helen Gordon says: “Grainger is in a strong position financially and our portfolio is performing as expected, showing a high degree of resilience during these uncertain times. We have achieved high rent collection, strong rental growth and maintained occupancy levels over 97 per cent.”
The firm is reporting pre-tax profit of £49.6m, down nine per cent largely due to the virus crisis.