What is Build to Rent?

Fizzy Walthamstow

If you are looking for a new build flat to rent, the term ‘Build to Rent’ is set to become increasingly familiar. It refers to developments that have been specifically designed for renters. An individual landlord who might own one or a small portfolio of flats within a building. However, Build to Rent landlords own and maintain the entire development. You can search for BTR developments by name or location, and view their resident ratings & reviews, on HomeViews.


Fizzy Living Build to Rent at Stepney Green

Are there many Build to Rent developments?

A growing number of people are renting privately in the UK, and the property industry is responding. The number of private renters has doubled over the past decade, with 20% now in rented accommodation. In London the number is even higher, with 30% of people renting privately. Recent tenant surveys also report that the number of people choosing to rent is increasing. Although most would still aspire to own their own home, many choose to rent for convenience or location.

While still a small proportion of the rental market, the number of BTR developments is set to grow, with 100,000 units currently in construction. Additionally, the government is supporting with a £1 billion fund to help finance schemes.

You can search for BTR developments by name or location on HomeViews. The British Property Foundation also has a useful resource showing the latest number of UK BTR developments.


What are the benefits?

Build to Rent landlords are invested in retaining their tenants and keeping them happy. This results in more of a focus on service and experience. That means an on-site maintenance team, a dedicated concierge, and quality communal areas, where you can meet your neighbours or invite friends over.

“Rather than rogue landlords and short tenancies the government is looking for professional landlords with long-term commitment offering longer tenancies.”

– Harry Downes, Managing Director of Built to Rent developer, Fizzy Living.

A recent government review of renting made a number of recommendations. And Build to Rent landlords were some of the first to sit up and listen. These recommendations include tenancies of up to three years, allowing residents to put down roots in a community and have some security, zero agency fees because you rent direct from the landlord, and no extra service charges. Another was having any annual rent increases agreed in advance.


Quotes from Residents

The build specifications, facilities and customer service found at BTR developments have generated some of the highest ratings and glowing reviews on HomeViews. BTR developments score higher across all categories (facilities, design, location, management, value) than other developments, and score higher overall. Below are some examples of happy Build to Rent tenants.

“What first appeared as a modern, well-designed building concept have emerged into somewhere I would regard as a beautiful home. The building offers stylish and spacious apartments with standard appliances that are the perfect place to relax after a busy day. The additional facilities (such as the gym and communal areas) are nothing short of exceptional and to have these close at hand is an added benefit. What’s more, the staff supporting the operation of the building are incredibly welcoming and make living at The Forge a truly enjoyable experience.”

–  Peter Gawthorpe, Build to Rent tenant at The Forge, an Allsop development.

“The service here is really the selling point. The reception staff are super friendly, welcoming, and accommodating, and having them available 24/7 really sets this building apart from others in its caliber. The convenience of having one payment (rent + bills) and of not having to negotiate your own internet/electricity/water providers can’t be understated. The view from the rooftop is absolutely phenomenal.”

Shayan F, Build to Rent tenant at Dressage Court, an Essential Living development.


Is Build to Rent affordable?

BTR developments typically offer a premium experience, with top of the range facilities & customer service. They are also often targeted at different demographics with different needs. For example, young professionals, those with pets or the over 55’s. A report by JLL found that average rents reflected these premium specs, being 11% higher than the local market.

Discover Build to Rent developers listed on HomeViews and other Rental Only developments.

Find additional information on BTR at HomeOwners Alliance.


written by