Rents stable across most of UK, latest index shows

The UK rental market stabilised in April following successive periods of growth across the country with average advertised rents at £994 per month, according to the latest published data.

Although the market is up 2.81% compared to a year ago, Scotland, the South East and the West Midlands were the only three regions that experienced an increase in average asking rents this month with figures reaching a record level in the South East, the Move with Us index shows.

In the South East rents increased by £19, equivalent to 1.71% and the 12 month comparison shows the market’s average advertised rent outstripped last year’s by £79 or 7.13%. The average asking rent has grown since the start of the year, following a relatively steady 2013. The average rent in the region peaked at £1,191 per month, the highest advertised rent recorded since the inception of the Rental Index. This reinforces its position as the most prominent market outside of London.

London’s market remains strong. The average advertised rent in the capital stood at £2,257 per month in April and although minor fluctuations are to be expected, they should not be considered to have any detrimental effect.

Overall, the general trend continues to be one of growth. Rents in the Yorkshire and Humber region fell by £20 in April. This follows the national trend as most regions saw a readjustment following steady increases during the first few months of the year. These adjustments are common as the average rent returns to expected levels.

‘This month it’s all quiet on the rental front for most regions in Britain. Whilst rents have dipped minimally in nine regions in Britain, this is no cause for concern as reductions are minor and this is an indication the rental market is finding a natural balance after a period of continued rises,’ said Robin King, director of Move with Us.

‘The South East is the only market with growth of any note in April. Landlords in this region have seen a strong start to the year. It’s likely the already buoyant market is benefitting from the rising number of commuters moving to more affordable areas surrounding Greater London,’ he explained.

‘In a yearly comparison, Scotland and the West Midlands performed well with the average advertised rent increasing by 5.28% and 4.84% respectively. Annual growth is positive news for landlords in these regions,’ he added.