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The average cost of rent across England rose from £985 in December to £993 in January, according to the latest rental index from Goodlord.

Rents climbed to three-month highs at the start of this year, as tenant demand and stock shortages drove prices up past record rental averages seen in October 2021.

Average rents in Greater London now stand at £1,675, meaning they are 126% more expensive than in the North East, which houses the cheapest properties.

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However, the North East had the biggest increase in average rent prices over the month, with a 3% hike. Average costs rose from £716 to £740.

“The pace of the market throughout the winter continues to surpass predictions. Rents are continuing to creep up as tenants compete for the best properties and, as inflation bites, the rising cost of rent is beginning to outstrip salary growth,” says Goodlord chief operating officer Tom Mundy.

The speed at which properties changed hands, however, decreased slightly over the month from December, according to the lettings platform.

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The average void period in England rose slightly from 18 days in December to 20 days in January.

“We wouldn’t expect to see record-breaking low voids during January, particularly in light of the huge market activity seen in December, so the small increase in void averages we’re seeing this month isn’t unexpected,” adds Mundy.

According to Mundy, UK landlord optimism, despite being on the rise, could take a substantial hit as tenants struggle to pay bills over the course of 2022.

“The overall market picture is still very strong compared to 2021. Landlords won’t be struggling to find tenants over the coming months but the rising cost of living may start to affect certain regions sooner rather than later.”

Source: Mortgage Finance Gazette

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