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Landlords passing costs onto tenants in form of higher rents

Tenants in the private rented sector in the UK are continuing to face rising rents with the latest report from letting agents showing that costs are rising at a time when supply is falling and demand rising.

The number of letting agents who saw landlords increasing rent costs for tenants rose to 35% in August, the highest level since July 2015 when 37% saw rents increase and up considerably on August 2016 when it was 27%.

The data from the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) monthly report also shows that only 2% tenants successfully negotiated a rent reduction, a drop from July 2017, when 2.5% managed to lower their rent costs.

The number of properties managed per member branch decreased marginally in August to 189 from 192 in July but this is higher than last August where agents managed 183 on average.

Demand from prospective new tenants increased to 72 in August, from 70 in July and the number landlords selling their buy to let properties remained the same as May, June and July this year, with an average of three for sale per branch.

‘This month’s findings paint another bleak picture for tenants. In November last year, only 16% of agents saw landlords increasing rent costs, but that figure now stands at 35% which is likely to continue rising,’ said David Cox, ARLA chief executive.

‘Landlords have had a rough ride at the hands of policy changes at Government level, and it’s becoming clear that these additional costs are now being passed onto tenants,’ he added.