The Crawley property market appears to be booming so we took a look through the results of the recently published census and housing survey to see what it could tell us. The data was compiled a couple of years ago and it is true to say that since then the house prices have risen substantially but prices do not tell us about the type of housing stock & demand.
The statistics show that Crawley & the surrounding villages are a landlords paradise with a good proportion of privately rented property. Throughout the area roughly 48,334 households, just over 6 out of 10 properties are owner occupied. A further 22% are social rented properties which is a definite nod to the new town roots of Crawley in the 1950’s. That leaves the remainder, just about 18% or to put a number on it, 8000 households as rented properties. This puts Crawley firmly in the centre of the national average, the latest English Household Survey reports that the national average for England to be 18% but there is a wide variation around the regions. For example our colleages in the Chelmsford office have a private rented sector that accounts for just 11% of their local property market.
So if there is a high proportion of rented property in Crawley does that mean it is harder to find a tenant or not enough tenants to fill the thousands of rental houses and flats. In the lettings industry we have traditionally worked on the basis that 5% of the private rental portfolio will be “on the market” at any one time. 5% of the rental property around Crawley would be the equivalent of 406 properties. I have just checked the Rightmove website & it is listing just over half that amount at 225. From experience I know that a good proportion of those properties will already be let to subject to contract whilst the new tenants are being referenced. In reality the figure could be 50% lower than the 225 properties listed on the portal.
Is the Crawley rental market booming? If only 100 of the eight thousand rental properties are available to let it would suggest demand is incredibly high and could explain why Crawley is a firm favourite for investment landlords.
A longer version of this story is on the blog at www.crawleyproperty.blogspot.co.uk