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The Gap Between Rental Supply and Demand Widened in January

More tenants experienced increasing rents in January compared to December

UK Residential Lettings News

The supply of rental properties declined between December and January, whilst the number of prospective tenants seeking rented accommodation surged in the same period.

In their latest private sector report, the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) revealed that agency branches managed 184 properties on average in January, compared to 200 in December; the lowest level since October 2017.

On the other hand, demand for rented properties continued to strengthen, as agents registered an average of 70 prospective tenants per branch in January, up from 59 in December.

Void periods also declined in the same period; in December, properties were empty between tenancies for an average of four weeks, but this fell to three weeks in January.

Meanwhile, rents rose for 19% of tenants in January 2018. Although this is up from 16% in December, it is down from 23% in January 2017 and 30% in January 2016.

ARLA’s chief executive David Cox believes that rising house prices are contributing to the growing number of prospective tenants, saying that “the volume of renters is increasing as the cost of buying a home is moving further out of reach for many.”

At the end of last week, Housing Secretary Sajid Javid announced the start of an eight-week consultation into introducing a single housing ombudsman service to cover the entire property market.

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