Inner city pressure
There are now fears that the situation could have adverse effects on Sheffield's housing market, as speculators help to push up prices and the council's own waiting list for rented property continues to grow.
As a result, councillors have ordered a detailed report into the market changes, where most new apartments are beyond the reach of those with an income below £40,000.
Some councillors are concerned that the housing market has priced many young people out of ownership and created accommodation which may be under-occupied in many cases.
Despite those concerns, statistics produced by council officials suggest only seven per cent of rented apartments are empty at any one time.
The figure is a stark contrast with Leeds, which underwent a similar boom in city living, where the rate is about 40 per cent.
It's hard to see this situation as sustainable - and not just because of the effects on the city's broader housing market. With an over-supply of rented flats, rental yields have already fallen to marginal rates. Private owners (the vast majority of whom are presumably speculative investors) must then rely on continued rises in the capital price for their returns. With a 'correction' in the housing market long overdue, a lot of purchasers are going to find themselves at a loss - with a strong likelihood of a large portion of the stock going on the market at a depressed price. While that might be good news for the housing associations who need to expand their stock, it's probably not for the longer-term prospects for these huge housing schemes. The glamorous urban living apartments of today are likely to be the high-rise hellholes of tomorrow.