London: The Most Expensive Place For Expats To Rent Properties

Expats in London spend the most on rental payments in Europe, based on the latest study of rates in different key cities in the continent.

On average, a three-bedroom home in the British capital costs around £5,190 per month, according to the ECA International study. Rents in the city have increased mainly because of high prices of residential properties for sale, which eventually slowed down the demand from home buyers. For instance, the cost of an apartment for sale has fallen by more than £10,000 in the last 12 months, as more people prefer to rent cheap accommodation in London.

Where Prices Are High

If you really need to rent a three-bedroom home, it is more affordable to find a place in outer London where prices cost an average of £4,000 per month yet remember that rates are increasing there. Rental property in Central London has become cheaper, although it remains the most expensive at an average of £7,000 per month.

Based on the ECA study, the demand for rental houses in the city remained steady despite increasing prices and mounting uncertainty with Brexit. The analysis only compared prices with rates in other European cities based on unfurnished three-bedroom homes in the mid-market segment, so the rates for studio and one-bedroom units should cost below £5,000.

Cost Of Renting Elsewhere

The average rental rate in the U.K. cost almost £930 in February, up by 2.1 per cent year over year. Average rents in London rose 4 per cent to around £1,600 in the same month. The price today may be different, although you should expect the city to remain as the least affordable place for renting properties.

Despite the increase, it is still possible to find cheap accommodation in London, although you need to make some adjustments. Those who live with pets should expect to have a more difficult time to find a place, since some landlords will not allow animals. Look for properties that accept students, as the price of accommodation could be much cheaper than regular apartments.

Why Buying Homes Cost More

Chiswick suburb street in autumn London, EnglandWhile rental rates keep on increasing, the median apartment price in London has gone in the opposite direction. An average-priced apartment cost £415,000 in January, and this is already cheaper than the same month in 2018. However, this does not mean that you should readily plan to rent a house without looking into different options.

Higher rents in 2019 await existing and potential tenants. In fact, letting agents have noticed higher rates since September 2018. Despite a new law in June that will prohibit letting fees and limit other charges, landlords will possibly roll over the costs by raising rental rates.


You need to weigh your options carefully if renting an apartment or house will be cheaper than buying one, as each will have its own pros and cons. But with the way prices have been increasing, it might be better to choose a rental property while sales prices remain out of reach for most people.