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More families across the North West are opting to set up home in rented accommodation – that’s according to new data released by property management specialist, SDL Group.SDL is managing a growing portfolio of family homes funded by Gatehouse Bank and Sigma Capital Group plc, which to date has built nearly 1000 new homes across 20 sites under its DifRent brand. A further 1,000 units are due for completion in the area over the next 18-months.Newly released statistics show that 42 per cent of all of their tenants in the North West have children, with the highest overall figure being in Manchester, where 74 per cent of those renting have dependents living with them.The data also shows that people are prepared to move to new areas to secure a prime rented property, with one in five tenants moving in excess of 10 miles to live in a DifRent property. The company’s property in Salford seems to have the biggest draw, with 15 per cent of renters moving more than 50 miles to be in their new home.The data also shows that:
· Just over a quarter of tenants have household salaries over £45,000 per year.
· Walkden and Eccles are the most affluent rental areas, where 12 per cent of tenant households have salaries in excess of £65,000.
· 37 per cent of renters in the North West are over the age of 35.
· Proportionally, Manchester has the oldest renters (over the age of 55), whilst Salford has the highest percentage of young renters (under the age of 25).
· The highest average rent is in Walkden and Eccles at £754 per month. Oldham and Rochdale have the lowest average monthly rent at £643.“These new figures from the North West show that Generation Rent is changing,” commented Paul Staley, director of PRS at SDL Group. “Renting used to be associated with younger generations, particularly single people and young couples.“Our figures show that more and more families are finding that renting is the better option for them. This is partly driven by the shortage of quality family homes for sale but also because of changes in lifestyle.“Just a decade ago, it was common for families to purchase homes and spend time doing them up. However, we’ve all become accustomed to a more immediate way of living and renting has become more acceptable. We’ve changed the way we buy and pay for things like cars, TVs, films and music, and we’re seeing this really take hold in terms of property.“There’s also been a notable shift in the older end of the market too and the way that parents are choosing to downsize after their children leave home. Quiet bungalows in the countryside are becoming less appealing and couples in their 50s and 60s are looking to recapture their 20s and 30s and are opting for chic urban homes. Ultimately, people want choice and flexibility, which renting offers.”Vicky Hurcomb, marketing manager at Sigma Capital added: “Demand for quality rental property is extremely high at the moment. We’re certainly meeting that demand, and at the majority of our developments a high proportion of reservations are being made off-plan, which shows the desire to quickly secure the best homes.“Whereas renting was once seen as a necessity, there’s been a shift towards it becoming a genuine lifestyle choice for young professionals, families and older generations who are seeking the freedom of living in a professionally managed home. The long-term nature of our rental portfolio is also an attractive proposition as it allows communities to develop, which is something that many of our tenants are looking for.”SEE ALSO - Blackburn tops list of BTL yield hotspotsUP NEXT - One bed flats enjoying highest rent increasesDON'T MISS - Rental market insights - new landlord toolNOW WATCH: