Strong rental growth and portfolio expansion continues

·         Like-for-like PRS rental growth 8.4% YTD

·         Occupancy 97.2% (PRS)

·         Sales of regulated tenancy homes at prices 2.6% above valuations

·         Over 600 new homes delivering in H1

Grainger plc, the UK’s largest listed provider of private rental homes with a c.£3.3bn operational portfolio of c.10,200 homes and a £1.6bn pipeline of a further 5,634 build-to-rent homes, today provides an update on trading for the four months to the end of January 2024, alongside its AGM which is being held today at its head office in Newcastle upon Tyne. The Company will announce its half year results for the six-month period ending 31 March 2024 on 16 May 2024.

Helen Gordon, Chief Executive of Grainger, said:

“Positive momentum continues within the business, underpinned by our market leading operating platform. We are maintaining strong levels of rental growth with like-for-like rents in our PRS/Build-to-rent portfolio growing 8.4%, while maintaining healthy customer affordability levels. Occupancy remains high at 97.2%. Our forward-looking key performance indicators show continued high levels of rental demand over the coming months, supporting occupancy.

“Sales from our legacy regulated tenancy portfolio continue to perform well with strong liquidity and pricing. The sales market is proving robust with a high proportion of our sales going to ‘best and final’ bids. On average, we are achieving sales prices 2.6% above valuations.

“Since our year end results in November, we have completed 307 homes at The Copper Works in Cardiff and continue with the phased delivery of homes at Weavers Yard in Newbury, with leasing in line with our underwriting assumptions. In the next month we will see two new build-to-rent schemes launching in Birmingham and Bristol totalling 606 homes.

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“In line with our stated strategy, we are continuing to build on our geographic clusters of PRS (build-to-rent) developments which delivers operational and financial efficiencies, and we are on track with the delivery of our committed pipeline which will deliver significant growth in EPRA Earnings over the coming years.”

Strong rental performance continues

Our market-leading operational platform continues to deliver value.
Like-for-like rental growth continues strongly:Jan24Jan23
Total like-for-like rental growth YTD:8.3%6.1%
PRS like-for-like rental growth YTD:8.4%6.1%
New Lets YTD: 8.5%7.8%
Renewals YTD:8.4%5.0%
Regulated tenancy like-for-like rental growth YTD:7.6%6.2%
Occupancy in our PRS portfolio remains high (spot, as at 31 Jan):97.2%98.7%

Robust sales performance

·       Whilst an increasingly smaller part of the business (c.23% by value), sales generated from our regulated tenancy portfolio as it unwinds (vacant possession) continue to provide a reliable source of capital for our continued growth.

·       We are seeing good levels of liquidity in the residential sales market.

·       We continue to see strong pricing, achieving average sales prices 2.6% ahead of valuations.

·       As our regulated tenancy portfolio reduces in size, we would naturally expect to see volumes of sales reduce. Last year, our portfolio reduced by c.14% (now £760m as at September 2023 valuations), whilst our PRS portfolio grows (£2.5bn).

·       As previously stated, we continue our elevated asset recycling activity, selling tenanted properties, portfolios and land to reinvest the capital into our build-to-rent pipeline and new higher-yielding opportunities. We expect to deliver similar proceeds from sales for the full year, including asset recycling, compared to last year.

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Strong earnings growth momentum continues

·       Two new build-to-rent schemes in Birmingham and Bristol launching in March, totaling 606 homes.

·       The operational leverage inherent in our business model ensures that we remain on track to deliver significant growth in EPRA Earnings over the coming years.

Outlook

The strong, compelling fundamentals of the UK residential rental market continue to underpin our investment case. Demand for renting, and our product specifically, remains exceptionally high. We continue to achieve record levels of rental growth, and should wage growth ameliorate later this year, we expect rental growth to continue be higher than historic averages, driven by our market-leading operational platform. With local and national elections later this year, we are comfortable that political and regulatory risk for our business is low and that our responsible approach to delivering high quality rental homes for the mid-market is very much aligned to the main political parties’ priorities.

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