Lettings Managing Director Andrew Berry said: “It is unprecedented. Across all our divisions we have seen growing demand for a broad range of rental properties, from one bedroom flats to family homes. Rents are soaring.”
London and the south east are amongst the areas seeing huge increases in rent. In Sutton, Surrey, the monthly rental on a semi detached, four bedroom furnished property increased from £1,475 to £1,800 in just five days and was snapped up on its first viewing.
In Wimbledon, south west London, the haart residential lettings branch has seen monthly rental charges on a two bedroom maisonette increase by £200 in some cases. In Ealing, west London, a one bedroom flat which was previously rented out for £1,200 per month was recently re-let at £1,400.
Other regions are also seeing rents rise as tenants fight to secure a property. In Norwich, a two-bedroom terrace house in the city’s Golden Triangle area has just been let by haart for £750 per calendar month. Only a few months ago similar properties in the area were being let out for £650 a month.
Mr Berry believes much of the demand is due to mortgages becoming harder to obtain along with other factors such as student debt and job cuts in the public sector starting to take effect.
He said: “The average age of a first time buyer is now 37. No doubt this will increase, which will mean more people having to rent. Student debt is also likely to rise which will make buying a property out of the question for huge tranches of the population. We also believe that the public sector cuts will have a big impact and mean that more people will be reluctant to commit to buying, remaining instead in rented accommodation.”
Whilst this is good news for landlords who can expect greater returns on their investment, it is not such good news for tenants with demand starting to outstrip supply in many areas.
“Tenants will have to fight harder to ensure they secure a property,” said Mr Berry. “In this market, the best piece of advice for anyone considering either renting or letting out a property is to research every aspect.”
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