UK rental market has a strong start to 2012

Resale properties decline as 10k properties added to the rental market in the first quarter

Detached, three bedroom properties the most popular choice for house buyers

Nottingham, Monday 18th June 2012 – New analysis from Experian®, the global information services company, today revealed that the UK rental market continues to grow, with a 6.34 per cent increase in the number of properties advertised to rent between January and March 2012 compared with the same period last year.  Meanwhile, the number of properties for sale dropped by 2.53 per cent.

Experian’s Movers Index, which offers new insight into the UK housing market, shows that the number of properties put up for rent got off to a flying start during the first quarter with 172,290 properties appearing on the market.  In January alone over 60,000 properties were added to the rental market.

However the overall number of homes added to the market for sale dropped from 191,892 in Q1 2011 to 187,046 in Q1 2012.  January 2012 saw 55,284 properties marketed for resale, increasing to 63,177 in February and 68,585 in March.

2011 Rental

2012 Rental

% change

2011 resale

2012 resale

% change






























Regional hotspots

Wales, Scotland and the North West resisted the downward trend in the resale market in the first quarter and were the only areas to witness a rise in new properties put up for sale with increases of 17.21 per cent, 8.94 per cent and 4.03 per cent respectively compared with 2011.  The North East saw the biggest drop (13.52 per cent), closely followed by London at 9.44 per cent.

In the rental marketplace many regions saw notable uplifts in the number of homes to let, with the North West taking the top spot with a 12.98 per cent increase closely followed by the West Midlands at 12.49 per cent. However, not all areas flourished with the East Midlands and Scotland seeing decreases of 3.57 per cent and 1.85 per cent respectively.

London in particular saw a huge difference in the number of rental versus sale properties added to the market in the first quarter. The capital saw 35,789 properties to let, almost double the number of properties put up for sale (19,996) and making up 20 per cent of all rental properties in the UK.

Property type trends

Experian’s data also revealed that when looking at resale homes, detached properties overtook their semi-detached properties as the most popular choice with 42,334 added to the market in Q1 2012. Three bedroom properties were the most dominant taking 38.88 per cent of the resale market.

Terraced houses saw the biggest rise in volume increasing by 12.55 per cent. A total of 23,483 were marketed in the first quarter of 2012 compared to 18,872 in the same period last year.

In the rental market, flats were the most popular property type taking the lion’s share of the market with almost 40 per cent. A total of 67,500 flats were rented from January to March this year, compared to 21,806 semi-detached houses and 20,920 terraced houses.

For rentals, two bedroom properties were the most popular - taking 35.61 per cent of the market compared to the second most popular choice of three bedroom properties at 25.62 per cent.

Jonathan Westley, Managing Director of Consumer Information Services at Experian UK & Ireland, comments: “The increase in rental homes in the first quarter of this year and the decline in resale properties illustrates how consumer’s financial needs are changing.  The increase in tenants further emphasises the importance of rental payments being taken into consideration for those trying to obtain credit, something that Experian has spearheaded with the launch of the Rental Exchange.”



Notes to editors

Experian’s Movers Alert service sources data from a range of UK sales & letting agents


Chantal Heckford / Kate Douglas / Maddy Morgan Williams

Lansons Communications
020 7490 8828 / / 

About Experian

Experian is the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to clients around the world. The Group helps businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. Experian also helps individuals to check their credit report and credit score, and protect against identity theft.

Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended 31 March 2012 was US$4.5 billion. Experian employs approximately 17,000 people in 44 countries and has its corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and São Paulo, Brazil.

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