Why is London’s rent so high and how can you find an affordable rental?

It’s common knowledge that London is home to some of the most expensive rentals in the country, but why is this the case?

To find out, let’s break down the ins and outs of London’s rental market and investigate how you can find a property that suits your budget. 

Why renting in London is so expensive?

So, why is rent in London so high? Multiple factors come into play. Firstly, London is home to nearly 9 million people and with this comes a lot of competition.

A big proportion of London’s population is renters, largely down to the fact that it attracts a lot of young people who typically are not ready to buy a house just yet. Although in many instances, people are priced out of the market when it comes to buying a property, leaving people with little choice but to rent until they have had a chance to save up a deposit. 

Unfortunately, when competition increases, so does the price of rentals, with some prospective renters outbidding each other to secure their desired property. 

Then, of course, there’s the influx of workers coming back to the office in the post-pandemic world. With more and more workplaces requesting a hybrid or even full-time pattern for returning to the workplace, this means workers need to be based nearby. This new lifestyle change has started to reverse the trend of the outward migration that we witnessed during the pandemic.

What’s the best time to rent in London and how can you select an affordable rental?

Typically, the summertime is a popular time for people to move, whether that’s into the city or internally. To avoid the hefty competition during this period, it’s recommended that you look for your rental between October and April. People tend to have less incentive to move to London with less motivation due to the poor weather. 

To get the best price, it’s recommended that you look at as many properties as possible to ensure you can identify the ones that are the best value for money. 

Researching different areas and boroughs will also help you get an idea of what you are looking for. You may want to be near amenities in a particular area but could significantly reduce your costs by looking at a cheaper area nearby. A different postcode could be more influential than you might think.

Once you have secured a property, it’s worth considering renters insurance to help protect your possessions from fire, theft, or damage. This covers you in the long term should something unfortunate happen. Considering how you can cut down any other ongoing costs will help reduce your monthly outgoings, making things more affordable in the long run.