Renaker's acquisition of DeTrafford could see the delivery of much-needed homes progress. Credit: via planning documents

Manchester rents soar as supply hits new low

Developers have started building 5,545 new homes so far in 2022, the most in the city for a decade, but upward pressure on rents caused by a lack of available stock continues, according to research by Urbanbubble. 

During the third quarter of 2022, the number of properties available to rent in Manchester hit its lowest rate on record, just 360, the report states. 

The city’s lack of supply is causing rents to spiral. In the last year, rents in some areas of Manchester have risen by as much as 38%, according to Urbanbubble.  

On average, rents in Manchester, Salford and Trafford have increased by 20% over the last year. 

Constrained supply and rampant demand – Manchester’s population is predicted to increase by 30,000 over the next six years – means the cost of renting in the city is unlikely to come down significantly in the short term. 

This dynamic could be compounded by the economic headwinds the development community is battling against, which could further slow delivery. A drop in the amount of build-to-rent homes coming forward over the next 18 months is also expected.

At present, the competition among renters to secure a flat in Manchester is so fierce that achieved rents exceeded advertised prices in Q3, Urbanbubble found. 

“Over the last 12 months, while asking rents have increased by a significant 15.8%, achieved rents have increased by 19.5% [on average]” the report states. 

Urbanbubble Q resi report p.Urbanbubble

The cost of renting a studio in Trafford has increased dramatically in recent months. Credit: Urbanbubble

One area that has seen considerable rental growth is Trafford, where more tenants are gravitating in search of cheaper homes. 

“A studio apartment in Central Trafford now costs more to rent than a two-bed apartment in the same area did just four years ago,” the report states. 

The cost of renting a studio in this area has risen by 12.3% since Q2 of this year and 24% year-on-year. 

While renters start to look for cheaper homes further afield, city centre developers continue to endeavour to keep pace with rising demand.

The city’s residential pipeline has been bolstered significantly in recent months with several developments progressing.

Trilogy Real Estate and Hong Kong-based Peterson Group are bringing forward plans for 750 homes as part of a  mixed-use redevelopment of the Great Northern Warehouse, while Oval Real Estate unveiled proposals for 367 homes as part of its Albert Bridge House scheme.

Meanwhile, Renaker has broken ground on its 1,900-home Trinity Islands project, Manchester’s largest single residential development. The developer also acquired the stalled Transition site from DeTrafford and is planning to enlarge earlier proposals for 400 homes.

You can find the full Manchester Monitor report on Urbanbubble’s website.

Your Comments

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My god They’ve built huge apartment blocks everywhere. Where are all these people coming from and who can afford them?

By Anonymous

Back to the old supply and demand equation (again)

This is a function of a lack of supply – why? Despite the efforts of officers at MCC the MCC Planning Committee has become a joke which does not help de-risk any investment proposals from developers for mainstream housing or purpose built student accommodation (PBSA). This is impacting on the long term supply of new accommodation in the city.

On the demand side – a booming economy with Gen X and Millennials wanting to live at the heart of the conurbation combined with students now competing to live in that mainstream housing market as a result of a lack of new build PBSA in the city. Nuts.

By Anonymous

Demand outstrips supply, that’s how. It says it in the article.

By New Wave

People are also moving up from London, if you have 5,000 people moving that can easily absorb all the new builds available.

By Anonymous

All the more reason to have the city centre lined with skyscrapers! Keep building them, build more and build taller. Much, much taller!


Anon: people are coming from all over the North and beyond. Young professionals do not want to live in Blackburn, Wigan, Burnley, Rochdale etc and all the well paid jobs are centralised in the centre of Manchester.

By Nick

So it seems an awful lot of people are moving to Manchester. Must be the all jobs or something .

By Tomtum

Hopefully this will end the “but who will live in them?!” comments under every article each time there’s a new development. The demand is there, the supply is not so there’s your answer!

By Verticality

Where is Central Trafford? Trafford is not a town.

By Elephant

    Hi Elephant. The area referred to as Central Trafford in the report incorporates Old Trafford, Stretford and Pomona. Thanks. Dan.

    By Dan Whelan

Surely supply is lacking on the lower price bracket – how many 1000+ £ monthly one bed apt still on the market? new building won’t help lowering the price, but quite the opposite..

By Anonymous

Good for Manchester from Liverpool!

By Anonymous

Anon 8.06am – if the Councils (Manchester, Salford and Trafford who are all Labour controlled) wants to inject greater supply of affordable housing inside the area that is defined as the city centre / regional centre then it will be the role of those Councils to facilitate that through their land ownerships or through partnerships with Registered Social Landlords / Housing Associations. The idea that this will come from the mainstream residential market in any great numbers is delusional because of viability.

By Anonymous

At risk of being called a Tory here, which I’m not, but for a city to be progressive and developed, in the way Manchester aspires to be – should ‘affordable living’ even be a priority for the City Centre region? Yes, in the suburbs, but in the Regional Centre? Not for me. I’d even be an advocate of gentrification projects.

By Progress

There are affordable developments being built by the council, Manchester has many surface carparks to be built on.

By Anonymous

Thank you Dan for clarification.

By Elephant

I disagree with Nick, Bury is very sought after,particularly Prestwich and the Pennine regions. Also Stockport, with places like The Heatons. Every town around Manchester has sought after bits.

By Elephant

More people want to live in Manchester than anywhere else in the country bar London. And it’s not just Londoners moving to Manchester but from all around the UK. The supply isn’t keeping up. Expect more and more towers and increased density all throughout the city in the next 10 years or so!

By Anonymous

I wonder if the GM Spatial framework is still a good assumption.

By Rich X

I am confused. If so many thousand more homes have been built and filled, to the extent there remains a shortage of supply, why isn’t this reflected in the number of properties paying full council tax…
What also jars is the lower post-covid recovery of bars, restaurants and shops in the week. It doesn’t suggest a booming city centre population.
It couldn’t be that supply is stifled by properties bought as holding assets and just being left empty, could it?

By Jeff

a lot of my friends have left manchester to relocate to west yorkshire (todmorden, halifax and sowerby bridge) due to the cost of housing in manchester and commute in when they need to. Locals who have grown up in large parts of greater manchester can’t afford where they grew up

By m23 resident

Yet the city centre is a ghost town midweek with bars and restaurants empty unless it’s a match day

By Cal

Jeff – Students are exempt from paying Council Tax. A lack of PBS, particularly for international students, is pushing students into the mainstream city centre market.
In respect of the post covid recovery of the city centre retail and F&B – these businesses will be affected by the impacts of the current energy crisis and the cost of living crisis that all of us are affected by!

By Anonymous

Cal, no idea what city you’re talking about or where you are but Manchester it is not.

By Dan

I remember on the Manctopia TV series that private landlords on the periphery of the city centre were increasing their rents. It sounded like people who’d always lived in the areas near the centre were having to relocate as a result. If that trend continues, it may well change the areas outside the skyscraper zones too.

I wonder if the authorities have taken this into account.

By MrP

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