Sykes releases Holiday Letting Outlook Report 2022

UK: Blaenau Gwent in South East Wales tops the rankings of the best places in the UK to invest in a holiday let, according to a new report from holiday cottage rental agency Sykes Holiday Cottages.

With house price growth currently at 12 per cent year on year, and an average revenue potential of almost £20,000 per year, the county borough offers plenty of long-term potential for anyone looking to invest.

Denbighshire and Rhondda Cynon Taf follow closely behind in the new ranking, while the leading areas in England which feature on the list include Tyne & Wear and Lancashire.

Meanwhile, the Isle of Bute in Scotland came in fourth. The island was the only area in Scotland to make it into the top ten, but both Fife and Dumfriesshire were not far behind.

The Holiday Letting Outlook Report 2022 analyses Sykes Holiday Cottages’ revenue data, alongside current house prices and house price growth, to drill into the long-term investment potential of holiday letting across the UK.

Location and amenities are two of the most important factors in a holiday home’s success, so within the regions listed, any property must also be in a good location and offer desirable facilities to strengthen the investment potential.

The report also contains consumer research, Sykes’ booking figures and insights from rental data and analytics company, AirDNA, to paint a clear picture of the UK’s holiday let market.

According to the poll of UK holiday home owners commissioned for the report, a quarter [25 per cent] only started letting during the pandemic, with the staycation boom fuelling a rise in second home owners and investors entering the market.

In fact, the sector continues to go from strength to strength, with bookings for Sykes’ holiday lets in 2022 up 35 per cent compared to pre-pandemic levels – a number that is expected to jump even further as we approach the summer months.

The consumer research found that 84 per cent of holiday let owners say bookings for 2022 are stronger than ever, with the same number confident the trend will continue to grow over the next five years.

The report also highlights that, compared to the same period in 2021, Sykes has seen new owner enquiries from prospective holiday home investors almost double, increasing by 78 per cent in 2022. 

With a rise in holidaying at home, Sykes’ report reveals the average holiday let owner earned £28,000 in revenue from their holiday let last year, up from £21,000 in 2019. 

For those weighing up where to invest in the short-term, Cumbria and the Lake District topped the highest-earning holiday hotspots list according to Sykes’ revenue figures, with holiday lets earning an average revenue of £44,000.

Devon and Dorset follow closely behind as top-earning regions, with an average annual income of £35,000 and £32,000 respectively, while the Peak District lost its top spot, falling down to fourth place overall.

[Credit: Sykes Holiday Cottages]

For those looking to maximise the revenue potential of their holiday lets, Sykes’ analysis found that a hot tub is the leading money-boosting feature they could have – adding an estimated 49 per cent to annual revenue.

Income figures also suggest luxury amenities such as open fires could boost earnings by 19 per cent on average, while a rise in pet ownership fuelled by the pandemic has seen pet-friendly properties now earn nine per cent more, on average.

Sykes Holiday Cottages CEO Graham Donoghue said: “The shift towards staycations had already begun pre-pandemic, Covid has just accelerated this trend. And although international travel is becoming easier, we now have new types of staycationers that are here to stay.

“The figures speak for themselves – bookings so far this year are up 35 per cent compared with 2019 and the average income of a holiday let owner grew by almost the same amount last year versus 2019 – demonstrating the incredible investment potential that holiday letting can bring.

“With the UK travel sector flourishing, this will continue to have a positive impact on the economies throughout the country that rely on tourism, particularly in coastal and countryside regions. In fact, nine in ten holiday let owners we surveyed think that tourism strongly benefits the local areas around their holiday homes,” he added.

Jamie Lane, vice president of research at AirDNA, added: “Holiday let demand for 2022 is pacing above previous years and, as shown in Sykes’ report, we expect the sector to go from recovery to expansion mode this year.

“Staying informed as the travel industry begins to normalise will allow new investors and existing homeowners to make smart decisions and add supply in the right places, evolving and adapting to changing consumer trends to offer memorable experiences in unique properties,” he added.

Last week, Sykes completed a reported £300 million deal to buy a controlling stake in cabin owner and operator, Forest Holidays. The move will help to accelerate its ambition to become a leading UK-focused holiday group with a diverse range of unique rental accommodation.

To access the Holiday Letting Outlook Report 2022, follow this link.