The trade body which serves as a cheer leader for Build To Rent says the niche sector is part of the government’s Levelling Up agenda.
The British Property Federation says a new analysis shows that the BTR pipeline grew by eight per cent in 2021, with construction in regional cities significantly outpacing London.
The research, undertaken in partnership with Savills, highlights that there are now 70,785 completed BTR units in the UK, a 26 per cent increase year-on-year, with a further 141,215 under construction or at the planning stage, up from 131,190 in 2020.
At Q4 2021 there were 26,820 units under construction across regional cities, marking a 27 per cent increase year-on-year.
Over the course of 2021 construction commenced on 13,527 units across regional cities, over three times the total number in London.
Ian Fletcher, BPF director of real estate, says: “The Build To Rent sector continues to expand rapidly and in 2021 we started to see signs that delivery across the regions is beginning to outpace London.
“Build To Rent is not just about increasing housing provision it is a major economic driver, helping attract and retain skilled workers and serving as a catalyst for urban regeneration.
“The strong growth of the BTR sector across the regions will support the government’s levelling up initiative and help revitalise town and city centres.”
And Jacqui Daly, a director of residential research at Savills, adds: “The geographic spread of Build To Rent shows that many more local authorities are beginning to understand the need for new rental stock and planning consents are rising as a consequence.
“At the same time, the BTR is becoming hugely competitive for investors, with a record level of capital deployed in the sector in 2021. If investors are able to find markets and stock to invest in, we expect delivery in the sector to double in size within a few years.”