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Strong demand for rental properties resulted in the average rent growing 1.8 per cent in June on an annual basis, rising to £941 per month, according to recent data from HomeLet, a specialist insurance provider.

Across the UK as a whole, the average rent has increased by 13.9 per cent in just the last five years, HomeLet revealed. Excluding London from the results, rents rose by 12.5 per cent in the same period, reflecting a general trend of strong rent growth across the country.

London rents grow slowly

London was found to have the highest rent of all 12 regions HomeLet surveyed. In June, rents rose 0.9 per cent, with Londoners expecting to pay average rents as high as £1,611 per month, significantly higher than the national average.

National Landlord Investment Show – MPU

Northern Ireland registered the fastest rise in average rents, according to HomeLet. In the last year alone, rents in that region grew 4.7 per cent, equivalent to an extra £30 per month. As a result, Northern Irish tenants paid an average rent of £671 in June.

Meanwhile, the North East region registered a decline, in contrast with other regions. Rental prices dropped 2.1 per cent on an annual basis in June, meaning tenants were paying average rents of £522 per month, the cheapest rent of any region HomeLet surveyed.

Duration of tenancies falls

The sustained rise in average rents across most of the UK coincided with data suggesting that the average duration of tenancies declined in June.

Martin Totty, chief executive of HomeLet, explained: “The average duration of a tenancy has reduced to 30.7 months, from 32.1 months in the same month last year. While this isn’t a significant reduction, the drop does coincide with the introduction of the Tenant Fees Act in England, and could be a very early indication of more mobility amongst tenants.”

The Tenant Fees Act, which entered into force on 1st June 2019, bans most letting fees and places a cap on tenancy deposits paid by tenants in the English private rented sector (PRS).

The Government introduced the measure to “reduce the costs that tenants can face at the outset, and throughout, a tenancy”, with the Government adding that “Tenants will be able to see, at a glance, what a given property will cost them in the advertised rent with no hidden costs.”

Mr Totty commented on the Act, saying: “It will be interesting to observe what prices do throughout the whole country in the coming months.”

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Steven Taylor
Steven reports on the daily churn of the property news cycle, often reporting on the stories you may have missed during the week. He covers a range of topics, including market sentiment, new findings and announcements by policy-makers.

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