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Build to Rent Bristol

Spotlight on: Bristol

Build to rent: Bristol

This is the third of a series of research reports from Gerald Eve looking into the UK’s major regional build to rent (BTR) hubs, following our research on Greater Manchester and Birmingham.

Instead of relying on third party databases and planning portals which can provide a distorted view of the development pipeline, Gerald Eve inspected all consented sites in Bristol to assess feasibility and actual progress on site. We believe this approach provides a more accurate supply-side picture. When combined with a local assessment of demographics and housing need, it delivers a clear impression of the likely future market dynamics and characteristics of the city.

There is a strong need for housing and the council has set a target of 52,000 total additional dwellings by 2040. Historically Bristol has a good track record of housing delivery. However, limitations on land supply mean that development in the city centre may be constrained in the short term, particularly for larger sites which would suit Build To Rent schemes. Set against favourable demographics and a large demand pool, developers and investors may increasingly look to target more flexible fringe locations for the delivery of large scale BTR.

The strategic plan for Bristol went into consultation at the end of January 2023 and the council is expected to adopt the new plan by Autumn 2024. The initial consultations provide some guidance on the next phase of development in the city; however, uncertainty remains on the final outcomes regarding site allocation for new homes and dedicated guidance on the role of Build To Rent for overall housing targets. This research will review the existing planning guidance and reflect on what is required from the new adopted plan.

If you’d like to find out more about the Bristol Build To Rent market or would like a more granular look into any of the schemes, locations, or planning policy discussed in this research, please do not hesitate to contact one of the BTR team.

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Key contacts

Bobby Barnett


Charles Boyes


Julia Chowings


Oliver Al-Rehani