Rents heat up ahead of the summer

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Rents rose to seven-month high of £1,183 in May, rising by 6.4% year-on-year, Goodlord’s Rental Index has revealed.

The average rent is up by 1.4% during May alone.

William Reeve, chief executive of Goodlord, said: “This month’s data may well have signalled the starting gun on summer price escalations. The coming months are traditionally the busiest season for the rental market and the time when rents peak.

“During 2024 so far, year-on-year rent rises have been fairly consistent – hovering around the +6-7% mark. Rental averages broke the £1,350 per month barrier for the first time in the summer of 2023.

“That means, if this 6-7% year-on-year trend continues, we could be seeing our first £1,400+ rental average being recorded in just a few months time. However, while rents continue to outpace both inflation and earnings, there are some signs of pressures easing, as seen in the void figures.”

The biggest month-on-month change was recorded in the West Midlands, where rents rose by 4%. This was followed by the North West, which recorded a 2% rise.

Voids across England lengthened during May, hitting an average of 21 days. This is a rise of two days from April’s average of 19 days.

Average voidage – which is how long a property is vacant between tenancies – is now 11% higher than at the same time last year, suggesting a slight lessening of the imbalance between demand and supply. Some 12 months ago in May 2023 average voids were 19 days.

During May, the biggest shift in void periods was seen in Greater London and the East Midlands. Both areas saw a 20% increase in void lengths.

The average renter signing a new tenancy in May earns an annual salary of £37,095 – up 0.8% on April’s figure of £36,810. The lowest salaries are found amongst tenants in the North East (£30,718) and the highest in Greater London (£49,883). The average age of renters in England during May was 33.


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