Even at the best of times, finding the right rental property in the UK’s biggest city is not easy. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the best rental websites London property hunters should be using. Whether you want to rent, let out or just keep an eye on the London property market, this list delivers.
The 10 best rental websites London property hunters needThese 10 websites will give you all the information you need to understand the London rental market. From initial research to discovering your ideal property, your best chance of finding it is by covering a wide net. Without further ado, happy searching!
1: ZooplaIn terms of coverage, Zoopla can’t be faulted. With listings collected from all major London estate agents (and most of the minor ones too), Zoopla presents a wide range of rental options across the city, suitable for all budgets.
As well as solid coverage, Zoopla also offers useful, easily navigable tools and filters to make your search easier. Zoopla’s data on the local market will also be very useful.
2: RightmoveA close competitor of Zoopla at the national level, Rightmove also offers a hefty portfolio of London properties. It has a refreshingly simple UI that puts each property’s images, videos, maps and descriptions within a single integrated view. Also offering a range of reliable area guides and useful news stories, Rightmove is a ‘must-consult’ site for London rentals.
3: OpenRentWhile it only launched in 2012, OpenRent became the UK’s biggest letting agent in 2015. OpenRent’s sales pitch is that it makes renting entirely transparent – something that any Londoner will doubtless appreciate. Equally useful for landlords and tenants, this site lets you bypass pushy agents and hidden fees.
4: FoxtonsFoxtons is London’s largest estate agent, with 50 offices across the city. They combine high listings availability with an innovative site that lets you search for properties near schools, stations and other points of interest.
You can also draw customised areas yourself on a map to really help filter out unwanted locations. Sign up for alerts and use the MyFoxtons app to stay up to date.
5: PrimeLocationDirected at buyers and renters with mid-to-upper-level budgets, PrimeLocation is a highly reputable firm with long ties to London. It’s an offshoot of Zoopla, so you can expect a similar level of coverage and accessibility when you use it. If you want to focus on London’s premium listings, it’s definitely a good place to start.
6: HomeViewsOf course we’re going to include ourselves! The only place for the most useful, trustworthy insights about London’s new residential developments. We have thousands of resident reviewers’ comments that cover hundreds of rental developments across London.
As an added bonus, the HomeViews blog gives you plenty of extra advice and insights. From FAQs on service charges and ground rent, to top pet-friendly developments in London, we help inform you to choose the right rental – no surprises included.
7: BoominBoomin is a newcomer to the market, having only launched in April 2021. However, it has made a solid first impression with renters across the UK, and is quickly expanding its nationwide coverage. Boomin focuses on a tech-driven, insight-heavy approach to giving renters fast access to the right kind of properties for their tastes and budget. There’s also a strong social presence and informative extras like the ‘property playground’ which offers an impressive range of insightful home improvement ideas.
8: GumtreeDespite its ever-present problem with scams, Gumtree is still one of the best rental websites London searchers can use. You’ll find listings here that you won’t see elsewhere. Also, Gumtree’s range of user safety tools and systems make it safer than ever.
Regardless, always make sure that you follow Gumtree’s advice on how to source and secure a safe, fair deal. More simply, if a rental offer sounds too good to be true, then it probably is!
9: SpareroomIf you’re a renter looking for a room, you can advertise on SpareRoom. If you’re a homeowner, you can also find your ideal lodger.
Renters tell them the site the sort of people you’d prefer to live with – party animals, neat freaks – whatever suits them best. They can also add photos and a video to bring an ad to life. Spareroom then shows likely potential matches and helps arrange viewings.
10: Sotheby’s RealtyWith prime properties in areas like Mayfair, Kensington and Knightsbridge, most of us will only use this to plan our Lottery win. If you’re looking to rent a London property for anywhere upwards of £15,000 per month, Sotheby’s realty section is just the ticket.
What is the best renting website for London?Remember that the ‘best’ rental website for you entirely depends on what kind of London rental property you’re looking for. Fortunately, the list above has plenty of variety. Whether you’re looking for the most affordable rents in the capital, or want to scout the luxury rental market, there’s a site for you.
Before you start your search, make sure you have a fairly clear idea of what your intended rental home looks like. While you don’t have to have ‘the perfect place’ all mapped out, nailing down some key factors beforehand will make the search easier.
For example, do you need to be in one specific London district or area? Or are you not tied by geography and are free to look more widely? What property type and style would you prefer? And, crucially, what is your realistic budget?
Are London rental prices increasing?Although London rental prices flattened out during the pandemic, in the last year or so they have continued to rise, albeit at a slower rate than the UK average. According to the Office for National Statistics, private property rental prices in London increased by a rate of 2.5% in the 12 months to August 2022. This is actually much slower growth than the rest of the UK (excluding London), which has seen 3.9% growth in rental prices in this period.
Is it hard to find a rental property in London?How hard it is to find a rental property in London will depend heavily on the area you’re searching in. Generally speaking though, there’s a significant shortage of housing available for rent across the capital, which may make it hard to find your ideal rental property. With people returning to London after the lifting of pandemic restrictions, it’s little surprise the rental market in the capital is so competitive.
Renting websites London: What to look forOnce you have the basics worked out, you’ll have a clearer idea of what London rental site to use. Even from their homepage, you should get a sense of their target audience. Check their introductory message, some example property listings, customer testimonies (if applicable) and experiment with their search tools.
Given how competitive the London rental market is today, these sites make it their business to provide their users with an easy, smooth and relevant search experience. With this in mind, you should be able to find what you’re looking for without difficulty. With a bit of luck, your search might turn up some nice surprises too!
Feel like your site should be on our list for London rentals? Don’t hesitate to get in contact and let us know.
HomeViews provides verified resident reviews of the UK’s housing developments. We’re working with developers, landlords and the Government to recognise high performers and help to improve standards in the built environment.