Glasgow contributes to 51% surge in build to rent completions in 2019

The number of completed homes for the UK build to rent (BTR) sector increased by 51% in 2019 with Glasgow among the key cities leading the way, new figures have shown.

Glasgow contributes to 51% surge in build to rent completions in 2019

The former Strathclyde Police HQ in Glasgow is being transformed into 433 BTR apartments by Moda Living and Apache Capital Partners

Analysis by Savills for industry trade body the British Property Federation (BPF) has found that at the end of Q4 2018, the sector had completed 13,312 new homes across the UK’s regions, excluding London. This figure jumped to 20,120 by the end of Q4 2019.

In Glasgow, the total number of build to rent homes completed, in construction or planning, grew from 2,909 at the end of Q4 2018 to reach 3,297 by the end of Q4 2019.

For the first time, the total number of newly completed BTR homes across the UK regions has surpassed the total in London, where the sector completed 3,061 new homes (from 17,000 to 20,061), an increase of 18% over the same period.

There are now 152,071 BTR homes at various stages of completion in the UK. Of these, 40,181 of these are complete, with a further 35,415 under construction and 75,475 in planning. This represents an increase of 15% over last year.

The regional breakdown saw Manchester and Salford leading the way, with almost 23,000 BTR properties either completed or in the development pipeline. Birmingham meanwhile nearly doubled its pipeline from 4,800 BTR hones, to over 8,000, with Leeds, Liverpool, Glasgow and Sheffield all seeing a major uptick in BTR activity too.


Manchester and Salford






End of Q4 ‘18







End of Q4 ‘19







Total number of build to rent homes completed, in construction or planning in top-performing regional cities

The average size of build-to-rent developments is also growing, indicating the confidence that investors have in the sector. At the end of Q4 2019, the average size of each completed build-to-rent scheme was 141 homes, this increases to 253 homes for the schemes under construction, while the average size of schemes in the planning system is higher still at 317 homes.

Ian Fletcher, director of real estate policy, British Property Federation, said: “Build-to-rent is well-liked by tenants and is proving popular with many local authorities. It has truly gone nationwide now, with homes being delivered across the country.

“As the government remains committed to delivering 300,000 homes, the sector is making a significant contribution to supply, regeneration and placemaking, with the average size of planned build-to rent-developments almost 200 homes higher than those that are complete, according to our figures.”

Jacqui Daly, director, Savills residential research, added: “With completions up by a third year on year, build-to-rent is an extremely positive real estate story, both for developers and investors, and it’s bringing forward much-needed, high quality and well-managed rental homes.

“There are real opportunities to increase supply in London. Having been some three or four years ahead of the rest of the UK, it is beginning to lag in terms of new pipeline.”

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