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The future of BTR goes beyond city centre apartments, say investors

Although the UK’s build-to-rent (BTR) sector is still considered new, it has already evolved. Both investor and societal pressures are pushing the model to adapt, to create the homes that customers want and to provide them in a way that suits our changing ways of living.

As a full service residential property manager, FirstPort has experienced firsthand the change in the market. Most notable, said FirstPort Business Development Manager Jeremy Ogborne, is investors’ current interest in houses alongside apartments. Investors are responding to the sector’s evolution to now include houses to rent, appealing to a far wider demographic than might initially have been considered.

“We’re seeing more interest from institutional investors looking to expand their multifamily UK portfolios to include housing rather than just apartments,” he said. “They’re looking to build on lessons learned, to mitigate risks and to diversify their investments. They want to provide high quality housing that the UK market is crying out for, but without the higher operational costs you get with apartments.”

The Growth Of BTR Housing

The UK’s first BTR schemes followed in a similar vein to those in the U.S. Large apartment blocks, developed and managed to a high standard, with a concierge and a range of amenities. The change has been the emergence of individual houses and low-rise blocks, still finished to a high standard but more reflective of homeownership in the way they offer privacy.

FirstPort is in extensive talks with UK institutions looking to invest in this segment of BTR, Ogborne said. They have recognised a demand in society for the sector and are negotiating with housebuilders to purchase the initial or final phase of a development which can be ringfenced for rental…

Read the full article on Bisnow here

This article was originally posted on Bisnow on 25th September 2019.