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Supply shortage worsened by eviction ban, claims lettings chief

The head of a lettings agency says there are up to 60 enquiries for every rental property he lists - and those enquiries typically all come on day one.

Jeremy Miller, director at Millerson in Cornwall, has told the Cornwall Live news website that demand for rental properties in the county was far outstripping supply, with up to a third of enquiries coming from as far afield as Bristol and London.

“There is currently a colossal demand for rental properties and added to that is the fact there is not a lot of rental properties coming to the market. Part of that at the moment is that tenants know that they have protection from eviction as they normally would” he believes.


Miller adds that the working from home habit means people move further, even for rented accommodation. 

“Since May last year at the end of the first lockdown, there’s been an incredible demand for rental properties from both people living locally and nationally" he adds.

“The rental market is very strong at the moment. One of my colleagues put a property in St Austell on the market to rent and by the time they’d returned to their desk they had 68 emails before the property came off the market again within hours.

"This, in turn, is increasing the prices of properties going to rent, because there's so much demand for what is available people are often willing to pay more."

The situation is worsened by landlords selling up, deterred by existing taxes and the threat of Capital Gains Tax change.

Miller says the government is making an enemy of small-time property investors due to heavy legislation and punitive taxation making it more difficult for small landlords to operate. 

  • jeremy clarke

    Same here in Christchurch with many out if area enquiries from folk wanting to live by the seaside. They get quite aggressive when told we won't arrange viewings because they have no need and we are still in a lockdown. Some get quite devious using friends addresses to appear local!

  • Matthew Payne

    Never seen anything like it and its not just a want to live in the country thing. My nearest 2 towns have a combined 4 properties to let, its normally 20x more than that. Massive bottleneck due to tenants choosing to stay put in this winter wave, eviction ban and section21s effectively off the table. Watch it explode this summer.

  • Noel Wood

    The bigger issue is landlords off loading - and with more haste I expect as there is talk around CGT changes and the full effect of mortgage interest being scrapped for higher rate tax payers. Tax on turnover not profits. The eviction ban will end, but the tax policies won't. Highly geared landlords in the higher rate tax threshold have to offload or incorporate which creates its' own challenges. Manageable at the moment but what happens when interest rates start to climb? The result is those that stay in the market are now getting premium rents - simple supply and demand, not good for renters.

  • Roger  Mellie

    It's interesting to see the migration towards out of town living, I would presume Jeremy and Matthew, you have good rail connections to London? London at the moment is the other way around, so far as the property cycle here works, we're in a hyper supply situation right now.

    Matthew Payne

    Yes, variety of options to Victoria, LB, Waterloo in under an hour.

    jeremy clarke

    Good transport links, London Waterloo in 2 hours but other destinations, Southampton, Winchester basingstoke all accessible within an hour.

  • James B

    Same on our patch .. we have capitalised on this and make homeowner guarantors standard now as we have so many tenants to choose from they must hit this bar now which gives the security we need with government protecting defaulters

  • icon
    • 12 March 2021 16:49 PM

    We built our own solution that provides an autoresponder for all inbound lettings emails and calls.
    Works brilliantly. More than happy to chat with anybody who is interested. #agentresponse


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