Renters expand search areas by 80% for BTR homes

New data from Rightmove reveals that renters are expanding search areas by 80% for Build to Rent homes, indicating behavioural changes.

Native Search Ads by Rightmove | BTR News

New data from the UK’s biggest property website Rightmove reveals the changing behaviour of renters looking for their next rental home. The study uncovers new opportunities for Build to Rent operators to market their properties to a bigger pool of renters as people redefine the idea of ‘local’.  

Compared to January 2019, the data shows that renters are more willing to move to further locations. The average area size that a renter enquiring specifically about Build to Rent properties has expanded by 80%, to 33 square kilometres. This is a smaller area than the average for all renters which is 97 square kilometres (+60%), reflecting the profile of major cities where Build to Rent developments tend to be located.

The research also found that 77% of renters search in more than one area when looking for their next home.

Renters are redefining local - Rightmove | BTR News

Nearly 50% of enquiries for Build to Rent properties on Rightmove come from over ten kilometres away. This figure has increased from 31% in 2019, highlighting a growing interest amongst renters in moving to new areas for a Build to Rent development.

Nearly 50% of BTR enquiries are over 10km away - Rightmove | BTR News

Further research from Rightmove shows that 80% of renters are not aware of Build to Rent, and therefore may not first search in areas where these developments are available.

To help tackle this challenge, Rightmove has launched a new ad format called Native Search Ads. These ads enable Build to Rent operators to advertise their live developments in search areas outside of the development’s location. The ads appear seamlessly in the property search results page, the most visited page on the Rightmove website. Operators can also highlight the different amenities and features they offer – such as parking, gym or pets allowed – in the ads.

Since rolling out the new product earlier this month, operators have leveraged Native Search Ads to promote their development and brand in more renter searches – including out-of-area or filtered searches.

Rightmove's Native Search Ads | BTR News

“As renters widen their search radius and explore moving to new areas, we’ve heard from Build to Rent operators that they want to get their brand in front of more renters who may not be searching where their developments are located.

“Native Search Ads help bridge the gap between renters looking at new areas to live and Build to Rent operators looking to attract new tenants from out of the area. With Native Search Ads and our flagship ‘Built For Renters’ listing, Rightmove remains committed to growing the awareness and interest amongst UK renters in living in a Build to Rent property.”

Nick Robertson, Director of Build to Rent, Rightmove