Research performed by Gatehouse Bank shows that landlords in Chichester face an average of 269 days without a tenant.
Oxford comes second in this ranking, with 261 days, and Warwick is third, at 254 days.
The study looked for the most vulnerable landlords in the country and measured a variety of indicators, such as rent as a percentage of earnings rather than focusing on yield, as is more typical.
The reason for this, the bank says is that,”tax changes including the second home surcharge and tapering of mortgage interest relief have constrained the buy-to-let market in recent years, resulting in an environment where yield alone can no longer be the primary consideration.”
The study concluded that, overall, Winchester is the riskiest place for landlords, with rental property being empty for an average of 248 days and rents being 56.2 per cent of earnings. Cambridge and Chichester came in second and third.
The least risky place is Bootle, where although the average time property sits empty is 183 days, rent as a percentage of earnings is just 22.3 per cent.
With Inverness and Stoke-on-Trent coming second and third respectively, the north-south divide is difficult to ignore, as Gatehouse Bank chief executive Charles Haresnape points out: “What our research shows is that famous Northern hospitality is not a myth. It’s a great place not only to be a landlord but also to live, with cities in the North and the Midlands performing much better across all indicators.
“What’s really striking is that in the areas that performed best, rental rates were far more affordable and this correlation underscores the symbiotic relationship between renters and landlords in areas where their investments could be deemed safest,” he adds.