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Buy To Let

Average tenancy reaches 20 months

Paloma Kubiak
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Paloma Kubiak

The average tenancy length in the UK has increased to 20 months, up 18% from 2014, according to data from Your Move.

The estate agent said it was outside of the capital where rental contracts were getting longest, with Sevenoaks in Kent boasting the longest tenancy in the UK at an average of 44 months.

Your Move noted that it was a popular area for commuters from the capital, with rents steadily rising over the last three years, increasing from £780 per month in June 2014 to £885 in June this year.

At the other end of the scale, the shortest tenancies were found in the south west at just 15 months on average. In fact, tenants in the towns of Filton and Taunton were subject to even shorter tenancies, at an average of as little as six months.

In Wales, the typical renter stayed in the same property for two years, though tenants in the market town of Abergale enjoy average tenancies of 30 months.

Meanwhile in Scotland tenancies last for 18 months on average, though those renting on the east coast enjoyed tenancies of 20 months on average.

Tenancies in Northern Ireland last for an average of 17 months.

UK regions in order of tenancy length

  • Wales – 24 months
  • West Midlands – 22 months
  • South East of England – 21 months
  • East of Scotland – 20 months
  • East of England – 20 months
  • London – 20 months
  • East Midlands – 20 months
  • North West – 20 months
  • Yorkshire and The Humber – 19 months
  • South of Scotland – 18 months
  • Edinburgh & Lothians – 18 months
  • Glasgow & Clyde – 18 months
  • North East of England – 18 months
  • Northern Ireland – 17 months
  • Highlands & Islands – 16 months
  • South West of England – 15 months.

The government’s Housing White Paper published this year promoted the benefits of long-term tenancies to landlords and tenants alike, while a recent tenant survey from LSL (part of the same family of companies as Your Move) found that more than a third of tenants would prefer a tenancy agreement of a minimum of three years.

Richard Waind, director at Your Move, noted that it was not so long ago that the nation saw a rise in the number of short-term lets, with landlords seeing them as lucrative and tenants enjoying the flexibility they provided.

“However, we’re now seeing a shift towards longer term rentals and the security that they can provide to both landlords and tenants,” he said.

“Our research has shown that tenants want to feel settled and if landlords can provide a suitable living space and service, tenancy lengths may increase across the UK.

“Through this type of extended agreement, we hope to see more co-operation between landlords and renters who both benefit from the affordability and stability long-term renting can provide,” he added.