Is The Upmarket HMO The Way Forward For Landlords in England?

Dec 6, 2022 | Blog | 0 comments

Are you a HMO landlord in England looking to move upmarket?

HMO landlords are looking for ways to improve their rental yield, whether by acquiring more units or making changes to the ones they already have. Yet, while HMOs are a key area experiencing growth in the private rentals sector, they often suffer from their poor reputation.

Traditionally, HMOs have been associated with low rents and very basic accommodation. Tenants choosing to live in shared properties did so not because they were making a lifestyle choice but often because of economic necessity.

As the traditional HMO tenant in England was on a tight budget, properties tended to be quite basic so they could fit into the tenant’s price bracket. This then became a cycle, since basic accommodation was only appealing to tenants who couldn’t afford something more upmarket.


It’s no wonder, then, that middle-income professionals steered clear of HMOs when looking for somewhere to set up home…until now!

Times are changing, and our team at The HMO Network has witnessed something rather interesting happening in the HMO marketplace!

There’s an increased interest in shared living arrangements amongst young singles who are seeking a community feel from their accommodation. So, let’s take a closer look at how the HMO marketplace in England is developing.

A Post-Pandemic Change

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, young singles looking for property to rent in England would almost always choose independent accommodation whenever possible. Private studio rentals and one-bedroom apartments were the top choice among professionals in their first few years of living in this area. However, when Covid hit, those same young singles found themselves isolated and lonely. Successive lockdowns left them trying to cope alone for extended periods of time, often in an unfamiliar area where they had no friends or family.

It isn’t too surprising, then, that now, with the worst of the pandemic behind us, those same Millennials and Gen Z tenants are now actively seeking out house shares and co-living arrangements where they can benefit from the company of other similar people.

Working Remotely

The Covid pandemic has led to an increase in the number of people choosing to work from home. Flexible and remote working arrangements were commonplace during the Covid lockdowns, and many employees have been unwilling to go back to the days of commuting to the office five days a week. Home working in a small studio, alone, isn’t especially appealing, whereas sharing a large space with other likeminded individuals is a far more attractive way of living.

Demand For Quality

While the renewed popularity of HMO properties in England is great news for landlords, it’s important to note that in some cases, changes need to be made. Young professionals are discerning and want to enjoy the same high standard of accommodation they were used to in their privately rented studios or apartments. They demand quality furnishings, excellent amenities, and all the key facilities associated with comfortable modern living. They aren’t prepared to settle for basic furnishings and limited amenities. So, HMO landlords in England must step up to the plate and consider how they can meet those demands.

The day of the upmarket HMO has arrived – and it’s a trend that any forward-thinking HMO landlord should take advantage of. By upgrading an existing HMO property, or by acquiring new units and ensuring they meet the exacting standards of the new generation of prospective tenants, it’s possible to command higher rental prices and reap more profit, even during a cost of living crisis.

Of course, managing any HMO property can prove challenging, and that’s where our team at The HMO Network can help. As experts, we’re on hand to help you secure the ideal tenants and take care of the day to day running of your property. Give us a call today on 01245 835859 to find out how we can help.