Essential Living completes Brentford refinance with DRC Capital

Essential Living, a developer and operator of homes for rent, has completed a deal to raise £11.4m of debt against a scheme in west London.

The build to rent brand has secured a two-year loan facility on its Brentford site with a one year extension option with real estate financers DRC Capital. The loan is intended to refinance Essential Living’s equity on the site during its hold period.

The company acquired the 1.6-acre site at 228-246 High Street in Brentford last September for £16.25m.

The scheme will provide the first homes built for long-term rent in Hounslow. A planning application is anticipated later this year and the site is planned as a mixed-use development, with retail provision on the ground floor and 180 homes for rent on the upper floors.

The scheme comes alongside major regeneration plans for Brentford and is five minutes from Brentford rail station, located just 30 minutes from London Waterloo and 15 minutes from Heathrow Airport.

Essential Living has a planned pipeline of 5,000 homes across eight sites in London and the South East. The company recently achieved planning permission from its Theatre Square scheme in Swiss Cottage and, prior to that, for its Perfume Factory project in Ealing for around 500 homes.

Its first scheme to open, Vantage Point in Islington, a revamp of the Archway Tower, will offer 118 apartments above Archway tube station.

Robert Hill, finance director at Essential Living, said:

“There is a strong appetite for lending to build to rent and we have been able to secure competitive terms from DRC that support our long term investment strategy to deliver 5,000 homes for rent across London and the South East.”

“As a long term investor we are able to look beyond short-term market volatility and the solid fundamentals of the rental market mean that investment in build to rent will continue to deliver solid risk adjusted returns over the foreseeable future.”

Dale Lattanzio, Managing Partner of DRC Capital, said:

“The build to rent sector, as an emerging asset class, is something we see much potential in. We are delighted to be partnering with Essential Living on its Brentford scheme which, like many of the company’s projects, is ably foretelling an upswing in the local market driven by a variety of factors. We see this as a superb opportunity to support the growing build to rent sector and look forward to securing further such deals.”