Desperate landlords who thought the Olympics would bring them pots of gold have been left with properties they can’t let — despite deep rental-rate cuts in some of London’s key postcodes.
Since the Games ended, and after their short-let tenants left, many landlords have struggled to find replacements, say lettings agents.
Max Slaght, a director of central London agents Domus Nova, says: “After the Games, we were just inundated by landlords wanting new tenants — and some of them were really desperate. That’s when prices started to fall.”
Rental discounts on offer are now sizeable, he says. Slaght is still looking for a tenant for a three-bedroom house in All Saints Road, Ladbroke Grove — normally a prime rental address — which was first put on the market at £2,200 a week in August. That price has now been slashed to £1,800 — a weekly saving of £400.
Another heavily discounted rental property in Durham Terrace, Paddington, also first came on the market in August at £995 a week. The two-bedroom maisonette is still on offer, now for £895, and Slaght believes it will probably fall to £800 a week.
Another property on Slaght’s books is a three-bedroom mews house on Scampston Mews, Ladbroke Grove. Its rental price has been slashed from £1,500-a-week when it was put on the market in the summer to £1,250-a-week. Slaght believes it will probably end up fetching around £1,200 – representing a weekly saving of £300.
Meanwhile a study by estate agent Knight Frank also notes a fall in rental prices in prime central London. It blames city job losses at firms like UBS, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank for reducing demand – and therefore prices – at the top end of the rental market.
However, while prices are falling in prime central London, the mainstream rental market remains strong. The October issue of the HomeLet Rental Index found rents are up six per cent year on year (October 2011-October 2012) across Greater London, to an average of £1,240 per month.