Did Covid Damage City Rental Markets in the UK?

Pre-Pandemic Market

In the Pre-Pandemic world  within the UK, the median monthly rent across the entirety of England in 2019 was £700, which was the highest it has ever been. The highest median monthly rent was in London at £1450, with the North East area being the cheapest at £495. Even before the Pandemic, the renting market was continually getting more expensive, likely due to Brexit.

Pandemic Market

During the Covid-19 Pandemic, many were forced home by their employers and the national lockdowns. This led many people’s habits and needs of their house to shift, sending waves through the market as many abandoned their small city flats for a nice-sized house in the countryside.

These waves resulted in increased rent prices. The median monthly rent across England in 2019 rose by £55 to £755, with an increase of £5 to £500 in the cheapest area, the North East, and a decrease in the highest median monthly rent in London by £25 to £1425, which is likely caused by high-rent payers moving to the countryside. 

Post-Pandemic Market

Following the Covid-19 Pandemic came the Russia-Ukraine War. This has, for many reasons, led to a cost of living crisis in the UK. Since the beginning of the war, the UK has been through 3 different Prime Ministers who have each made attempts to solve the economic crisis, some of which made the crisis worse, which then fell upon the housing market.

With the crashing of the pound, the cost of living crisis and high-interest rates all combined together, house renters have struggled greatly as their bills for heating and electricity have skyrocketed, and now their landlords may also be asking for more rent, in order to continue making a profit, as the property value increases and the cost to own the property increases. 

Statistically, this is evident as the price of the median monthly rent raised once again by £45 to £800. With the return of workers to the office and the poor economic situation, the highest median monthly rent was in London at an increase of £50 to £1475, and the cheapest area, the North East, increased once again by £25 to £525.


In the end, it’s not simply Covid that’s affected the UK rental market lately. The spiralling cost of living crisis is having an increasing, if not bigger effect, and also looks likely to be longer lasting too.

Written By Stephen Taylor Propaganda

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *