Demand for short-term lets in the London Victoria area from corporate contacts is growing, says Caroline Hawking, Director of Hamptons International
In recent years, there has been an increasingly noticeable trend for accommodation that is neither a hotel nor a serviced apartment – rather a convenient home from home for anywhere between six weeks and six months. As we approach the busiest time of year, short lets are an attractive option for individuals who have a little used pied-à-terre that they are reluctant to part with, sellers with vacant properties and buy-to-let investors. For landlords, short lets give flexibility and a higher rental – approximately 40% more than the typical long-let value.
While there is no set type of tenant for short-let properties, the most attractive tenants come from our corporate contacts. Law firms, consulting companies and, increasingly, a large number of tech companies look to us find their employees short-term accommodation. These companies often have employees seconded to their London offices for two, three and four month stints for specific projects, or on employee exchange programmes. Their preference is increasingly for short lets as opposed to expensive and impersonal serviced apartments.
In recent weeks, we have also seen tenants looking for properties close to hospitals as they are here for medical care, and as the families of international students. Major London and UK events have also historically driven requirements – and the forthcoming Rugby World Cup is likely to generate pockets of demand for those connected to the tournament.
The local regeneration of Victoria by Land Securities with 2.2 million sq ft of office, residential and retail space is changing the physical and rental landscape in the area. The area has always been convenient for visiting Europeans because of the fast link to Gatwick airport from the station and its close proximity to Buckingham Palace and the West End. But with business including Jimmy Choo, Labelux, Bally, CPA Global, Angel Trains and Intuit choosing to relocate and now base themselves in the area, it’s anticipated that demand for short-term rentals will continue to grow.
We are seeing a demand for all sizes and specifications of properties varying from compact & bijou studio apartments to four and five bedroom family homes that are needed for top executives arriving with their families. Many short-let tenants come from overseas and often will go straight from the airport to the property so its important expectations are clearly defined and managed ahead of time.
Caroline Hawking, Director, Hamptons International; 020 7717 5315; hamptons.co.uk