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Housing market sees major surge in activity as tenant demand rises

The housing market experienced a significant uptick in activity in April 2024, with increases in buyer registrations, new sales instructions, and sales agreed. Meanwhile, the lettings sector saw a rise in prospective tenant registrations, although demand continues to outstrip supply.

Increase in residential sales activity
Propertymark’s latest Housing Insight Report reveals that the number of market appraisals per member branch rose from 22 in March to 26 in April 2024. This increase indicates a potential rise in future supply. The average number of sales agreed per branch also saw an upward trend, suggesting a more active market as spring begins.

Fluctuating rents and reduced arrears
In the lettings sector, rents showed variability across different markets and regions. Most Propertymark members reported that rents either remained static (47%) or increased (41%) during April. Encouragingly, rental arrears decreased, with only about 2% of fully managed and rent collect properties in arrears, indicating improved payment stability among tenants.

Rising tenant demand outstrips supply
The report highlighted a notable rise in tenant demand, with the average number of new prospective tenants per member branch increasing from 82 in March to 90 in April 2024. Despite a slight increase in stock levels, demand continues to exceed supply, with around nine new applicants registering for each available property.

Richard Johnson, a Propertymark member agent, commented on the current market conditions: “We’ve seen a significant increase in tenant registrations this month, which reflects the ongoing demand for rental properties. However, the supply still lags behind, creating a competitive environment for tenants.”

A dynamic market for landlords and buyers
April 2024’s housing market activity indicates a robust start to the spring season. For landlords, the high demand for rental properties presents an opportunity, although the persistent supply shortage poses challenges. Prospective buyers and sellers are also experiencing a more dynamic market, with increased activity and new opportunities emerging. As the year progresses, keeping an eye on these trends will be crucial for making informed decisions in the property market.