London's 10 priciest neighborhoods | July 2017

City Rental News / July 15, 2017

Welcome to our second installment of Rent Companion’s monthly analysis of the priciest neighborhoods in London. Each month we take a look at the changing face of the London rental market analysing the rental industry’s historical and live rental data.

This month, we have added average (median) Days on Market (DOM) to our analysis, while including a dynamic table at the end of the article.

About London

London’s pricey, we all get it. But just how pricey is it? It’s always been the most expensive city to live in the UK and has become a staple on priciest cities in the world lists. But this analysis takes aim at the supply and demand shifts in London’s priciest neighborhoods to find out just how expensive they really are. Even non-Brit's are likely to recognize a few of the neighborhoods on this list.

London has a metro population of nearly 14 million and a city density of 5,518/km2, creating a naturally low supply in the most desirable places. This is coupled with the natural demand of living within the city making London unaffordable for most.

This is supported by the average (median) rental price for a two-bedroom flat of our top 10 London neighborhoods being a staggering £4,646!

Rental Market Overview

The month-over-month shift in supply across London was especially felt by these pricey neighborhoods and seemed to have a major effect on their prices. The cumulative increase in live rentals of the seven returning neighborhoods was up roughly 240% compared to the same time last month. At the same time, we saw an average drop of roughly 30% in median rents in those same areas.

The main culprits were both Kensington districts and the Chelsea district increasing supply cumulatively by nearly 2,400 units. This is likely due to Universities closing for the summer and the wealthier students heading home abroad - creating an influx of ‘lower cost’ properties to hit the market.

Summer is certainly a known time for seasonality factors in dense university populations. It’s a good time to jump into a rental if you can stand the price ranges of these areas.

Methodology

This analysis was done by indexing current on-the-market properties by rent, bedrooms, and district code 1 then ranking them by their medians. This allows us to lower the effect of outliers, as you will see in the descriptive statistics section for each area. Each aggregated district code must have more than 30 live properties and must be a 2 bedroom listing.

When analyzing rental properties and geographic areas, we try to tailor our analysis to the audience, but this is just a fun exercise that everyone can enjoy reading. If you are interested in deeper analysis please feel free to reach us at: info@RentCompanion.com

Results

#10 (↓3) Chelsea district | SW3 | £3,423/mo ↓25.6%

One of the biggest offenders for the influx in supply this month, Chelsea district contributed 567 more properties than this time last month. This supply influx saw their median price drop over 25%.

      Last Month’s Rank: 7
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 23
      Min|Avg|Max: £1,712|£4,136|£65,000
      Population: 8.8k
      Rentals Available: 727 | ↑354.4%

#9 (↓1) Kensington district | W8 | £3,566/mo ↓17.9%

Both North and South Kensington flooded their respective rental markets this month - totaling 1,430 properties. Compare that to last month’s total of 379 and it’s no surprise why the two districts saw an average median asking price drop by roughly 25%.

      Last Month’s Rank: 8
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 28
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £1,582|£3,861|£19,231
      Population: 8.0k
      Rentals Available: 797 | ↑398.1%

#8 (↓4) Belgravia (South), Chelsea (part) | SW1W | £3,575/mo ↓43.8%

Belgravia, surprisingly wasn’t even the largest drop in average rental price on our list! Normally with a smaller supply - usually less than 100 properties - Belgravia’s 2 bedroom flat market can be susceptible to swings.

      Last Month’s Rank: 4
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 21
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £1,707|£4,842|£19,283
      Population: 9.4k
      Rentals Available: 195 | ↑182.6%

#7 (↓1) South Kensington, Knightsbridge | SW7 | £3,683/mo ↓35.8%

Read #9 Kensington district

      Last Month’s Rank: 6
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 26
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £975|£5,129|£23,851
      Population: 9.3k
      Rentals Available: 633 | ↑189.0%

#6 (∞) Drury Lane | WC2B | £3,783/mo ↓6.6%

Our first of three new entrants this month is the little Drury Lane. The only surprising outcome for next month's analysis would be if Drury Lane was able to garner enough live properties to stay on our list - you need at least 30.

      Last Month’s Rank: N/A (<30 properties available)
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 20
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £2,167|£4,707|£12,003
      Population: 10.8k
      Rentals Available: 35 | ↑65.7%

#5 (↓2) Mayfair (South), Piccadilly, Royal Academy | W1J | £4,160/mo ↓52.3%

There is no other way to describe South Mayfair’s fall this month - it was tremendous. Seeing a drop in average rent price from £8,717 to £4,160 in a single month is utterly impressive. Similar to #8 South Belgravia, South Mayfair generally has a smaller more exclusive market that leaves it open to volatility swings. This means a flood of ‘lower’ cost rentals hitting the market has a greater effect on average prices in these areas.

      Last Month’s Rank: 3
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 43
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £2,795|£7,013|£36,426
      Population: 10.6k
      Rentals Available: 168 | ↑150.7%

#4 (∞) Covent Garden | WC2E | £4,212/mo ↑18.6%

Our only top 10 districts to have a gain in rental price this month is the newly added Covent Garden! Kudos to you if you noticed all three of the new entrants to the top 10 are grouped away from the other seven districts - East of SODO. Unfortunately, each has some very tight rental markets - struggling to make the list due to such low supply.

      Last Month’s Rank: N/A (<30 properties available)
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 28
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £2,058|£4,730|£10,803
      Population: 11k
      Rentals Available: 51 | ↑66.7%

#3 (∞) Charing Cross | WC2N | £4,247/mo ↓1.6%

The last of the newbies, Charing Cross… same story as the other two, so let's move on to the top two.

      Last Month’s Rank: N/A (<30 properties available)
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 35
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £2,808|£4,594|£7,778
      Population: 10.8k
      Rentals Available: 37 | ↑56.8%

#2 (↔) Belgravia, Chelsea (part), Kightsbridge | SW1X | £5,417/mo ↓24.7%

It says a lot when you can drop nearly 25% on your average price and you’re still head and shoulders above the next competitor. Belgravia is settling in its #2 spot being roughly 25% more expensive than our third spot on the list - that's after its large price drop mind you! But like every other district in London, and most districts in the world, it can’t compete with our #1 spot.

      Last Month’s Rank: 2
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 30
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £1,946|£5,775|£15,167
      Population: 8.8k
      Rentals Available: 173 | ↑121.8%

#1 (↔) Mayfair (North), Grosvenor Square | W1K | £10,398/mo ↓12.5%

Even when other ‘exclusive’ neighborhoods are adding rentals like leaky sieves, North Mayfair’s exclusivity above the rest shines. A nearly rock steady supply of rentals had North Mayfair sustain its pricing slightly better than others, but it seems like it is still feeling the competitive rates reflect into their own pricing.

      Last Month’s Rank: 1
      Median Days on Market (DOM): 31
      Min|Avg|Max Rent: £3,683|£10,368|£21,233
      Population: 9.3k
      Rentals Available: 62 | ↑1.6%

For many, the eye opener isn’t specifically the neighborhood’s, but the clear effect of seasonality. Each of the above neighborhoods is notorious throughout England and the world for their exclusivity and price tag, but this doesn’t exempt them from the effects of seasonality.

The real story is the month-over-month flood of ‘low cost’ rental supply. Below you can have a play with some of the data I used above!

Thanks for reading! If you liked this analysis check out more articles like this one on our blog. We publish regular updates and analysis on rental and property markets.

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to reach out to us at info@RentCompanion.com