New generation of tenant values experiences over materialism

New generation of tenant values experiences over materialism

As the UK’s ‘coolest’ brands list for 2016 is revealed, consumers are turning to brands that create memories – and these attitudes are changing UK property.


  • Apple, Netflix and even Glastonbury are among the top 20 coolest brands in the UK
  • Brands such as Ray-Ban and Chanel fall, as more consumers begin to choose experience over materialism
  • As we move away from a “society based on what you own or can afford”, is non-ownership transforming attitudes towards renting in Britain?

New research indicates a consumer shift away from materialism towards brands that can deliver great experiences – and there’s evidence to suggest these attitudes are now changing the UK property market, too.

The 2016 CoolBrands List, which compiles the most desirable global brands among consumers, has shown a rise in the number of experience-led brands over high-end fashion labels.

While Apple maintained its place at number one for the fifth consecutive year, legendary music festival Glastonbury rose to second place, followed by movie streaming service Netflix. Instagram, Spotify and YouTube were also ranked among the top 10.

Luxury glasses designer Ray-Ban, ranked second in 2015 fell 18 places to 20 on the list. Alexander McQueen dropped seven places on last year to now rank 13th, while Chanel fell nine places to 19th.

“People are now less likely to aspire to a flashy car, preferring something more relevant to them and their lifestyle,” said Stephen Cheliotis, Chairman of the CoolBrands Council. “We have moved away from a society based on what you own or can afford. That is why some of these brands have fallen from grace.”

Once renowned for their aspiration to own a home, fewer Britons are now making it onto the property ladder. Homeownership levels are currently at a 30-year low, while demand for rental accommodation has increased by 17,500 per month for the last decade.

While the high cost of ownership makes buying a home increasingly difficult for many, a growing number of young workers, the ones who have driven the flight to brands such as Netflix and Spotify away from physical copies of films and music, are actively choosing to rent their homes as it fits best with their lifestyle.

Almost 60% of 20 to 39-year-olds in the UK will be privately renting by 2025, with many prepared to pay a premium for accommodation that delivers an amazing experience.

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