It seems a distant memory three years ago when we were filling in our Census Returns, but now the figures are beginning to be released, especially the statistics about property. The figures for each individual town and council have been released, so let’s look at the area Tunbridge Wells District Council figures.
In the whole of the Council Borough area (the town of Tunbridge Wells and the immediate villages) there are 47,174 households, with just under a two thirds of properties being owned, 65.7% % to be precise (30,999 households) of which 15,111 don’t have a mortgage (lucky people!). Renting interests me and 7,995 householders rent their house off a private landlord (or 16.9% of households to be exact). If you recall in a previous article, I said 19.1% of households in Tunbridge Wells alone (just town itself and not the Borough Council area) are privately rented, showing that more people rent in the town than they do in the villages.
So, with 16.9% of households being rented in borough, which is just above the national average of 15.6%, where does that put our Borough when compared to others? For renting, Royal Tunbridge Wells Borough is just outside the top 25% of local authorities when it comes to renting (98th out of 347 authorities) but we are in the bottom third for home ownership (228th out of 347 local authorities).
So does that mean renting isn’t booming in Royal Tunbridge Wells? Quite the opposite! Demand continues to be good from quality tenants who are prepared a pay a decent rent, but only for a decent property. If you remember a few weeks back, I said the landlords in Royal Tunbridge Wells, on average over the last 12 months have achieved a total return of over 8.5% in the last year. If there were a glut of rental properties, there would be an oversupply of property to rent, driving prices down. In the lettings industry, it is recognised there will always be 5% of the rental market up for rent at any one time, which means there should be 399 properties to let today in Royal Tunbridge Wells and the rest of the Borough area (5% of 7,995 privately rented houses in the Borough is the 399) .. I am pleased to tell you there are only 286 as I write this article!
Don’t get me wrong, tenants are more discerning in the properties they rent. Woodchip wallpaper and no central heating won’t cut the mustard anymore. However, present your Royal Tunbridge Wells property to a good standard and price it right and you should do very well. If you are considering becoming a landlord or are an established landlord who is thinking of buying another property to rent out in Royal Tunbridge Wells, please do your homework. Feel free to ask my opinion on what makes a 'decent property'. I don't sell property, so it's in my interest for you to buy the right property for you, not me. I don't charge for that opinion, because I hope you will recommend me to your friends, which in fact is the best compliment you can make.