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London -the city of renters

Jonathan Seager – Executive Director, Policy, London First

London is about to become a city of renters, with the number of people renting in the capital due to overtake homeowners by 2025. London must therefore take a long-term and strategic approach to providing Londoners with a better choice of rented accommodation. This is where build to rent comes in – it can deliver stable, long-term investment into high-quality new homes, designed specifically for the rental market.

There has already been significant growth in the sector, but with the full support of local authorities build to rent can dramatically boost housebuilding in London. This is why London First has partnered with London Councils and Turley to produce Everything you need to know about build to rent in London. The report provides Councillors and officers in London government with an overview of the emerging build to rent sector; its designed to be a quick and easy read and a resource that can be used to engage with boroughs about why build to rent offers benefits to their local areas.

The report sets out why build to rent is relevant to London and the many housing challenges the city faces, the benefits that such development can bring such as helping to increase housing supply, and an explanation of key issues that boroughs will need to consider when thinking about build to rent schemes in their areas.

There is no simple solution to London’s lack of housebuilding – increasing supply requires action on multiple fronts. This means, amongst other actions, building at higher densities to make the best use of land, using new transport infrastructure as a catalyst to unlock more housing development, and introducing a coordinated approach to identifying and releasing surplus public land for housing. London First is currently working and campaigning across all these areas and more to create the right environment for London to increase housing supply to keep the city competitive.

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