Knightsbridge continues to be one of London’s rental property hotspots, with demand at record levels, according to Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings,

Online PR News – 21-February-2011 – – Knightsbridge continues to be one of London’s rental property hotspots, with demand at record levels, according to Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings, one of the area’s most popular letting agents. On average, the number of tenants looking for a property to rent in Knightsbridge and Chelsea has reached a figure of around 10 per property and landlords are reporting rental increases of as much as 20% over this time last year.

According to Marc von Grundherr, director of Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings, the boom in rental demand is being fuelled in part by the continuing shortage of new rental properties as the number of tenants renewing their existing tenancy agreements reaches record levels.

“Around 76% of our tenants are renewing their existing leases at the moment, an unprecedented figure. This is leading to a severe shortage of rental properties, a problem that has been getting worse over the last 18 months as tenants realise they are unlikely to find a better or cheaper property elsewhere. This is compounded by the number of first-time buyers still unable to find a mortgage who are choosing to rent instead, together with the increasing number of professionals moving to London because of the upturn in the employment market.” explains Marc.

“Knightsbridge and Chelsea continue to be extremely popular, with more single professionals and couples coming to live in the area. One and two bed apartments are in particularly high demand, both in new developments and well modernised period conversions.” continues Marc. “One bed apartments in the £350-£500 per week price bracket and two bed apartments at £500-£750 per week are in very short supply and we’re constantly looking for new instructions in this price range as we have prospective referenced tenants in waiting. The good news for landlords is that rents are also increasing and are at their highest since 2008.”

Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings works closely with relocation agents and here too there has been a significant shift in the type of enquiries that are being received. “Traditionally, much of the business we receive at our Knightsbridge branch through relocation agents tends to be for larger, family properties but the last 12 months have seen a move towards smaller one and two bedroom properties.” reports Marc.

The shortage of one and two bed rental properties in Knightsbridge is prompting some tenants to look further afield. Marc continues: “New developments like This Space in Wandsworth are proving to be very popular and are a great alternative for professionals wanting to live near the centre of London. Landlords may find that rental prices are currently a little under what developers originally suggested; this is mainly because figures quoted were slightly high when apartments were first sold off-plan. We often find this problem, especially in the current economic conditions but with rents now climbing, developments like this represent a good long-term rental investment for landlords.”

“And when it comes to larger, family properties at the higher end of the market (£1,500+ per week), a number of factors come into play when tenants are deciding where to rent a property. Finding a good school place is one of these and it can be difficult in Knightsbridge as the best independent and state schools are often over-subscribed. Many families only realise this once they have moved to the area and are then faced with this unexpected problem. That’s where our local knowledge comes into its own. Our Brompton Road office has been established for over 10 years so we know the area really well and we can advise tenants on how to overcome these problems – our service goes far beyond simply finding a client a home.”

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