Q4 rental voids at yearly low

The specialist buy-to-let lender’s Private Rented Sector Trends survey reported an average void period per year of 2.6 weeks in Q4, a low which was last recorded in Q1 2012.

At the same point in 2013, the average void period per year was 2.8 weeks.

This remained the same in Q1 2014, it dropped slightly to 2.7 weeks in Q2 and returned to 2.8 weeks in Q3, showing a fluctuating trend.

Void periods have remained low over the period of the survey, averaging between 2.6 and 3 weeks since 2001.

The lowest recorded void period was 2.5 weeks in Q4 2002, and the highest at 3.5 weeks in Q2 2010, which was during the peak of the financial crisis.

John Heron, managing director of Paragon Mortgages, said: “Although void periods have fluctuated slightly over the past year they have continued to remain low, peaking at 2.8 weeks.

“It is encouraging to see that, in Q4, void periods reduced to the lowest point recorded since 2012, only slightly above the lowest average void period reported by our research at 2.5 weeks.

“The low average void periods we have seen over the past year, and in previous years, reflects the strong and growing demand we have seen for private rented property together with effective property management by landlords and letting agents in renting out properties.

“This is positive news for landlords and, as tenant demand continues to rise, it is possible that void periods may decrease even further in 2015."