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Spotahome: High streets draw higher rents as Londoners pay for hustle and bustle

Jessica Bird

August 27, 2020

Tenants in London pay higher rents to live around the high street, the latest research from Spotahome has revealed.

Spotahome looked at each London borough based on the high street population as a percentage of total population.

In all nine boroughs where more than 50% of the population is located on or near the high street, people paid above the London average rent of £1,644.

For example, the City of London had some 82% of the population living on or near a high street and an average rental cost of £2,274.

In Camden and Hackney, the typical rent was £2,302 and £1,842 respectively, with 63.1% and 53.2% of the population found living around the high street.

Despite this trend of people paying more to live in urban areas, COVID-19 could cause a shifting of priorities, resulting in more demand and correspondingly high rents in areas with more green space.

In areas where less than 34% of the population live on the high street, average rents are all lower than the London average of £1,644 per month.

For renters seeking some distance from the high street in London, Bexley (£1,169), Croydon £1,140), Sutton (£1,151), Havering (£1,169) and Hillingdon (£1,200) were found to be the cheapest places to live, while they all have a low proportion of people renting around the high street.

However, as more of us look for a more socially distanced rental option, higher demand could see these prices increase.

Nadia Butt, UK and Ireland country manager at Spotahome, said: “While it’s understandable that people pay more to be near amenities like tube stations, bars and restaurants, this trend may be shifting.

“After spending months inside, many tenants are prioritising green spaces over the busy high street, especially as they look to avoid being exposed to the virus in the event of a potential second wave.

“Therefore, we may see a rebalancing of the cost of renting, as demand shifts from the high street to parks and greenery, with these currently more affordable boroughs climbing in cost as a result.”


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