The positive side of The Olympics and the rental market in London
While many landlords and agents have come under fire from the media because of the higher rents they are charging over the Olympic period, bear in mind that without residents offering this facility we would not be able to house all the extra visitors the Games will generate, because our hotels would be filled beyond capacity.
It may seem that some of the properties are expensive, however take an example of a three-bed house in Greenwich sleeping eight people, which is being rented for £11,000 during the Olympic Games period – including the opening and closing ceremonies. So sixteen nights’ accommodation for £85 per person per night, which sounds much more reasonable, especially when you take into account the owners higher risk and depreciation, not to mention the higher demands being made for this type of tenant who is expecting hotel-like service.
Also while these temporary tenants are staying in the community they will be spending money in local shops, cafes, restaurants and bars. This could well be happening in areas that don’t traditionally benefit from tourism.
This is not to excuse the behaviour of property owners who have treated their long-term tenants badly but, as always, this is a minority of people in a sector of the industry that has risen to the challenge of accommodating extra visitors in a creative and flexible way. Most landlords have taken the view that if their long term tenants are settled they will not try to ‘cash in’ on the Olympics, but where their property is naturally available they have tried to maximise their assets.
The role of the Agent is always to find the best (highest) rent that the market will bear for their clients property and while some Agents may have been very bullish about the market it is always easy to criticise this attitude in retrospect. Landlords were expecting high prices, tenants were expecting high prices, no one knew what the supply and demand figures would actually be and so agents had to test the market to ensure they didn’t let property too cheaply. It is worth noting that Estate Agents would have been criticised for this action as they are for charging high rents.
There are many local people who do not fancy trying to live their normal lives with the disruption of the Games going on who will be away for the duration and for them the chance to let out their property allows them to take a comfortable holiday and make a little extra money too.
Anyway with the Games almost upon us perhaps it is time to draw a line under this argument? There are unlikely to be any visitors that have left it this late to rent accommodation.
You can see out other blog on Olympic letting here.