Is there an increased demand for rental properties that offer parking facilities?
This depends where the rental property is located. In central London there isn’t so much demand for rental properties with parking facilities as tenants tend to have shorter commutes, use public transport or walk or cycle to work rather than drive in congested areas where parking generally is expensive and restricted. By contrast, in Zones 3 and 4, there has been a lot of residential investment with new property schemes popping up in locations such as Colindale, Hendon, Ealing and Brentford where tenants tend to request a parking space, probably because some are driving to jobs on the city fringes.
So is it worth a landlord buying a parking space when they purchase a new rental property? With the cost of a parking space ranging from £15,000 at Beaufort Park in Hendon to £75,000 at Fulham Reach in Hammersmith and upto £300,000 in Knightsbridge, this can be an expensive decision.
But in a competitive rental market we advise investors to do everything they can to ensure their property appeals to as many applicants as possible. If you don’t have a parking space, someone who uses a car will not consider your apartment. But if the flat has a parking space it will suit all types of tenant whether they have a car or not.
Corporate tenants in particular consider a parking space a necessity (they often have a company car as part of their salary package) as does anyone who works or travels regularly outside London. And over 60% of apartments with three bedrooms or more must have a parking space to attract professional tenants.
A parking space probably won’t increase an apartment’s asking rental but by appealing to more applicants it will ensure it lets more quickly. And when the landlord does decide to sell, the availability of a parking space will enhance its sale value. So we would always advise buying a parking space if possible (except possibly in prime central London where the cost can be prohibitive) as the investment will prove worthwhile in the long term.
Marc von Grundherr
Benham & Reeves Residential Lettings