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【World Property Journal】London Rental Property Demand Beginning to Rebound Amid COVID-19 Era

【World Property Journal】London Rental Property Demand Beginning to Rebound Amid COVID-19 Era

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International property consultant Knight Frank is reporting this week that demand for London rental property has picked up in April 2020, as prospective tenants begin to plan for life after the lockdown.

In the first week of government restrictions, the number of new prospective tenants registering in London and the Home Counties fell 59% compared to the five-year average. In the week ending April 18th, the decline was 28%.

"In the early stages of the lockdown people froze," said Jon Reynolds, head of lettings for the City and East region of London at Knight Frank. "That has changed as time has gone on. People now know whether they've been furloughed or not and some are starting to plan for life after the lockdown."

The number of web views for rental properties has also increased in recent weeks. In the week ended 4 April, the figure was 1% higher than the five-year average. By the week ending April 18, the increase was 10%.

Lettings transactions are quicker, involve smaller financial commitments and are established for fixed periods of time, which means demand typically responds more swiftly to change than it does in the sales market.

"The lettings market can turn on a sixpence," said David Mumby, head of central London lettings at Knight Frank. "It is the most nimble area of the UK housing market and we trade by the day with a product that can come on or off the market. Small variations in currency or tax policy can produce sudden changes in demand and the infrastructure is now in place that means we can move people quickly."

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