Leading lettings management platform, Howsy, has looked at where across the UK is home to the lowest level of rental stock to meet tenant demand.

Howsy looked at all property listings across the major portals and then looked at what percentage of these was accounted for by rental properties as opposed to properties for sale, to see where was most in need of more buy-to-let landlords.

The data shows that across the UK’s major cities an average of just 33.2% of all stock listed is to let rather than buy, while across London’s boroughs this increases to 37.1%.

The worst served city for rental stock is Newport in Wales where just 13.5% of properties listed are to rent, with Bristol the second lowest and lowest in England at 15.8%, closely followed by Glasgow at 16.4% as the lowest in Scotland.

Belfast ranks as the city with the fourth lowest level of rental stock at 16.8%, with Plymouth completing the top five at just 24.9%.

When it comes to an abundance of rental stock, Aberdeen tops the table with 62.2% of all properties listed on the portals for rent. Newcastle ranks second with 53.5% followed by Oxford (47.3%), London (42.1%) and Southampton (41.2%).

Looking at the capital on a borough level, Bexley ranks as the worst area for rental stock availability with just 15.2% of property listed on the portals available for tenants, not homebuyers.

Havering (16.4%), Bromley (18.7%), Sutton (21.4%) and Croydon (23.7%) also rank amongst the lowest, while Westminster is home to the highest at 62%.

Founder and CEO of Howsy, Calum Brannan, commented:

“This data not only suggests where tenants might struggle to find a place to rent due to an imbalance of rental to sale stock but perhaps also where has seen the largest exodus of buy-to-let landlords due to recent changes in legislation with lettings stock dwindling while the amount of property for sale increases.

It makes sense that in cities dominated by industry, such as Aberdeen or Newcastle, and in those with the least affordable price tags, such as London and Oxford, there is a higher tendency to rent and therefore more rental properties as a proportion of all homes listed.

However, it also highlights that in areas such as Newport, Bristol and Glasgow where rental stock is very low, there is a real opportunity for the professional buy-to-let landlord due to a higher level of tenant demand with a lower investment cost.

Whichever way you look at it, we’re seeing a shift in lifestyle trends towards a greater acceptance of renting on a longer-term basis with the scramble to own our own homes taking a back seat, and so it’s important that the level of rental stock available is cultivated to meet demand across the UK.”

Rental stock (% of properties)
City
Rental stock (%)
Aberdeen
62.2%
Newcastle
53.5%
Oxford
47.3%
London
42.1%
Southampton
41.2%
Leeds
40.2%
Swansea
39.7%
Cardiff
37.7%
Manchester
37.6%
Birmingham
37.1%
Cambridge
36.8%
Sheffield
32.2%
Leicester
31.9%
Bournemouth
30.9%
Edinburgh
27.6%
Nottingham
26.9%
Liverpool
26.7%
Portsmouth
25.5%
Plymouth
24.9%
Belfast
16.8%
Glasgow
16.4%
Bristol
15.8%
Newport
13.5%
Average
33.2%
Rental stock (% of properties)
Location / borough
Rental stock (%)
Westminster
62.0%
Kensington and Chelsea
61.7%
Camden
59.5%
Hammersmith and Fulham
51.5%
City of London
50.2%
Islington
49.9%
Tower Hamlets
47.0%
Brent
42.4%
Haringey
40.9%
Southwark
40.2%
Barnet
40.0%
Wandsworth
39.6%
Hackney
39.6%
Ealing
38.7%
Lambeth
37.4%
Newham
37.1%
Merton
36.3%
Hounslow
36.0%
Harrow
35.6%
Redbridge
35.1%
Richmond upon Thames
34.3%
Greenwich
34.1%
Enfield
32.0%
Barking and Dagenham
30.6%
Lewisham
30.2%
Kingston upon Thames
29.7%
Waltham Forest
28.6%
Hillingdon
27.5%
Croydon
23.7%
Sutton
21.4%
Bromley
18.7%
Havering
16.4%
Bexley
15.2%
Average
37.1%
Inner London
46.2%
Outer London
30.3%