As TFL hints at a decade-long delay for Crossrail 2, here’s how rents have fared since the scheme was first announced

  • A TFL business case has hinted that the £31bn Crossrail 2 infrastructure project could be delayed until the 2040s, in order to raise the required funding
  • Tenant demand has spiked since the route announcement in February 2013, pushing up rents in 13 of the 15 local authorities along the much anticipated commuter line
  • Landbay calls on government to link £2bn boost to affordable housing and infrastructure plans

A leaked business case from TFL to the government this week revealed that Crossrail 2 could be delayed by a decade, as a funding shortfall jeopardises the final go-ahead from ministers. As the future of the line is called into question, the latest Landbay Rental Index, powered by MIAC, reveals that a significant uplift in tenant demand in the four and a half years since the route was announced has pushed up rents in 13 of the 15 affected local authorities, and by 21.5 per cent around north terminus Broxbourne.

When the route for Crossrail 2 was first announced in February 2013, rents were falling in seven of the 15 local authorities set to house the new line. In the year that followed, a dramatic uplift in tenant demand saw rents grow in all but one, Epsom. Overall in the four and a half years since the announcement was made, 13 of the 15 affected local authorities have seen notable rent rises, most notably in the North and West extremities of the line, namely: Broxbourne (21.5 per cent), Enfield (13.8 per cent), Haringey (11.4 per cent) and Spelthorne (10.5 per cent).

However, while tenant demand indeed grew quickly until 2016, the government has begun to drag its feet on the final approval of the new infrastructure project, and rents have once again begun to fall, almost across the board. Only Enfield saw rents grow (0.4 per cent) in the past year, although by September rents had fallen here too, by -0.2 per cent last month. Meanwhile Broxbourne (-1.75 per cent), Richmond (-1.13 per cent), and Spelthorne (-2.16 per cent) are all showing signs of dwindling tenant demand.

As London rents return to growth in September, after falling for 15 consecutive months, there are signs that demand for rental accommodation could again be rising in the Capital, putting further pressure on the government to follow through on its pledge to release an extra £2bn of government cash for local authorities across the UK to build more affordable housing.

John Goodall, CEO and founder of Landbay said:

“The idea of a north/south London railway dates back to the 70s, but it was only in 2013 that we found out where Crossrail 2 would actually run. Planned infrastructure is a key driver of tenant demand, so rents and property prices along the planned line quickly followed suit. But news that the line may now be delayed by a decade is nothing short of a hammer blow to all those that have had the foresight to plan that far ahead.

“What’s needed by tenants, landlords, buyers, business, and builders is a clear commitment from the government that the project will be delivered in 2033 as expected. Not only to help people and businesses plan their lives ahead, but also to allow adequate time for local authorities to plug housing shortfalls before demand spirals out of control.

“For example, the latest £2billion social housing pledge is an encouraging sign that the government is taking seriously the UK’s housing shortage, but this could and should be linked to the UK’s infrastructure plan, to spare any nasty surprises down the track.”

UK Rental Index

SEPT 17 YoY (percent) MoM (per cent) Av. £
UK 0.73 0.10 1,196
England 0.64 0.09 1,227
Scotland 2.01 0.42 733
Wales 1.31 0.01 640
London -0.80 0.01 1,876
UK without London 1.56 0.15 758

 

UK Rental Index by number of beds

One bed Two bed Three bed
YoY (per cent) MoM

(per cent)

Av. £ YoY

(per cent)

MoM

(per cent)

Av. £ YoY

(per cent)

MoM

(per cent)

Av. £
UK 0.56 0.14 1,016 0.74 0.13 1,158 1.11 0.09 1,330
England 0.45 0.12 1,049 0.66 0.12 1,193 1.03 0.08 1,350
Scotland 2.03 0.55 554 1.78 0.37 696 2.24 0.32 1,130
Wales 1.47 -0.06 544 1.08 -0.03 655 1.75 0.09 616
London -0.80 0.06 1,448 -0.88 0.03 1,920 -0.66 -0.02 2,684
UK without London 1.66 0.21 599 1.58 0.18 715 1.72 0.13 825