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Rents shoot up in South of England

The cost of renting has risen in the South of England outside London, research from Homlet shows.

Rents have risen by 10% to £942 in the South West, by 7.7% in the East of England to £983, and by 6.1% in the South East to £1,085.

The cost of renting has fallen by 4.5% in London to £1,556, signalling people moving out of the city.

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Andy Halstead, chief executive of HomeLet, said: “At a national level the latest data shows a continuation of the trends we’ve seen emerging since the national lockdown ended, with rents for new tenancies increasing across the UK, with the exception of London.”

“In the regions surrounding London, the annualised variations in rental values for new tenancies looks significant, especially in the South West (10%), East of England (7.7%) and South East (6.1%). In reality this is a theme that we’ve seen grow gradually month on month, since July 2020.

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“In the South West average rents are now £83 per month higher than the same time last year. The upward pressure on the regions around the capital, particularly commuter towns, is coming from a broad range of tenants looking for more space, both inside and outside the property.

“The trends we’ve seen in the past 12 months highlight the responsiveness of the private rented sector, and the crucial role it plays in supporting the changing needs of a significant proportion of households in the UK.”

BY RYAN BEMBRIDGE

Source: Property Wire

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Rents Are Rising In Rural Areas

Rents for new lets increased in the year to October, but only in rural locations, Hamptons International has reported.

Its November Monthly Lettings Index put the annual rise across the whole of Great Britain at 1.4 per cent, and the average monthly rent for newly let residential properties at £1,041. The increase was the first annual rise indicated by the index since March 2020.

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But the figure masks sharp differences between rural areas, where rents were 5.5 per cent higher in October than a year ago, and cities, where they were 5.3 per cent lower.

‘This is due to a shift in tenant demand, with more renters looking to live in the country rather than cities’, said Hamptons. ‘As a result, there were 29 per cent more homes available to rent in cities and 48 per cent fewer to rent in the country during October than at the same time last year’.

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Rental growth accelerated across Great Britain in all regions apart from London, down 0.6 per cent, and Wales, down 4 per cent, Hamptons reported. ‘Rents in London fell for the eighth consecutive month in October as the gap between rental growth in Inner London, down 14.9 per cent, and Outer London, up 3.3 per cent, widened to the largest differential on record’.

The biggest rental growth was seen in the North of England and the South West where rent were up by 5.9 per cent year-on-year. Rents in the North reached a record high of £689 per calendar month.

Source: Residential Landlord

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Rental Market Buoyant Except In London

Rents in London have fallen during the Coronavirus pandemic, property portal Zoopla has reported. However, London is the exception and rents risen in a buoyant rental market across the UK as a whole, it said.

‘Average rents in London have fallen by 5.2 per cent over the last 12 months, reaching levels last seen in 2014’, Zoopla found. It puts this down to ‘new working patterns and lack of tourism during pandemic’.

In contrast, rents increased outside London by 1.7 per cent and rental has increased by a fifth over last year – strong demand that is being driven by a squeeze on lending to potential first-time buyers, said Zoopla.

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‘At the same time, supply remains constrained with levels of investment in buy to let still reduced following the changes to Stamp Duty (the additional 3 per cent surcharge on second properties) and the wider tax regime introduced from 2016 onwards’.

Renters are showing increasing interest in larger properties, especially those that may have access to outside space.

‘The search for space, first seen in the sales market, is now being firmly replicated by renters. Zoopla’s top searches for rental properties include the terms gardens, parking, garages, balconies and pets, reflecting a need for outdoor space and freedom necessary to cope with lockdown. There is also evidence that while the market as a whole is moving more quickly, the market for rented houses is moving more quickly than that for rented flats, reflecting this desire for more space among renters’.

‘For most of the UK, the demand/supply gap is underpinning moderate levels of rental growth’, said Zoopla head of research Gráinne Gilmore.

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‘The split in the rental market caused by COVID-19 has now crystallised and we are seeing the two-speed market firmly entrenched.

‘We haven’t seen the exodus of students from cities and, as more people are staying in the rental market given the squeeze on mortgage lending, higher levels of demand will continue to underpin rents. At the same time however, muted earnings growth will start to limit the headroom for rental growth in some markets.

‘The search for additional space, both indoor and outdoor, within the rental sector is also set to continue as the country goes through additional periods of lockdown’

Source: Residential Landlord

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Rental Demand Increases While Landlords Opt To Sell

Landlords appear to be dealing with the Coronavirus Crisis in their stride. Well over half have told the latest National Residential Landlord’s Association survey that the Coronavirus has not so far had any significant impact on their business.

Surprisingly, only a fifth of landlords said the virus had had a ‘significant’ impact in the last three months. Meanwhile, a third reported an increase over the previous three months in the demand for private rented housing.

Even so, almost half of landlords said the virus had had at least some negative impact and most said they had less confidence about the future.

Of the 2,000 landlords questioned, over half – 56 per cent – said they were less, or much less, confident of being able to achieve their goals over the next year. Consequently, while one in six of those surveyed said they planned to purchase at least one or more additional properties over the next year, twice as many said they intend to sell one or more properties.

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Previous NRLA analysis suggested total private sector rent arrears resulting from the Coronavirus Crisis could now be as high as £437m in England, and the association said it is now time for the Government to help sustain the rented property market by providing financial support to help tenants pay off COVID-related rent arrears.

‘Following similar schemes developed in Spain, Wales and Scotland, the NRLA is calling for tenants in England to be able to access hardship loans to cover such arrears’, it said. ‘This would see loans available interest-free and guaranteed by the Government specifically to cover unpaid rents since lockdown measures began in March. Payments would be made directly to the landlord’.

NRLA chief executive Ben Beadle said that whilst the majority of landlords have been working constructively with tenants who have struggled financially due to the pandemic, it is not sustainable to allow rent arrears to continue to increase indefinitely.

‘This is highlighted in the lower levels of confidence among landlords and the impact it is having on their businesses’, he said. ‘Providing the financial support needed to help tenants pay off rent arrears built since lockdown started would cost the Government less than Eat Out to Help Out. As we head into more local lockdowns, it is even more important that tenants don’t have to worry about meeting their rent bill’.

Source: Residential Landlord

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Rents rise in most regions

The cost of renting increased across six out of eight regions of the UK – with particularly strong increases in the North East and East Midlands, Goodlord’s rental index has found.

In July the typical cost of renting was £838.24 in the North East, up from £652.61 in June.

The East Midlands also saw a rise of 17% increase, with rents rising from £795.24 in June to £961.34 in July.

The only regions where rents didn’t increase were the West Midlands (0%) and Wales (-5%).

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Tom Mundy, chief operating officer at Goodlord, said: “July’s numbers confirm that the post-lockdown bounce we were expecting was more than a flash in the pan.

“The market has found its feet once more and is retaining momentum. Comparisons to 2019 data are highly encouraging; showing a return to predicted levels of activity and, in some instances, exceeding expectations.

“In addition, rental prices and void periods both bode well for the sector as we head into August, which is also a traditionally busy month for the industry.”

BY RYAN BEMBRIDGE

Source: Property Wire

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Pent up demand fuels resurgence in the rental market

Lettings market activity in June was significantly higher than the same month last year, the Rental Index from Goodlord has shown.

After number of new tenancy applications were received during May, June saw that demand translate into completed lets.

The number of completed lets stayed above 2019 averages for all but six days of June, marking an extremely busy month for the industry.

The cost of renting rose by 3% across the England and Wales between May and June.

Void periods also dropped in five out of eight regions.

Tom Mundy, chief operating officer at Goodlord, said: “If May was characterised by a release of pent up market demand, then June was that demand translating into action.

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“The numbers throughout the month were incredibly impressive and show how hard the industry has been working to serve as many tenants and landlords as possible.

“We saw an unprecedented number of lets completed each day in June. It’s therefore no surprise to see those levels of demand starting to affect average rental costs and void periods.”

The biggest rent rise was seen in the South West, which saw average prices increase by 11% – from £859 per month to £965.

Wales wasn’t far behind, posting a 9% rise in average rental costs.

The average salary of a UK renter dipped slightly month-on-month, from £25,068 to £24,613.

BY RYAN BEMBRIDGE

Source: Property Wire