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London rents fall for first time since 2009

Monday 08 May 2017

Rents on new tenancies in London fell by 1.2 per cent in April compared with the same month a year ago, according to new figures from tenant referencing company, Homelet.
The first annual fall in eight years saw the London average rent fall to £1,519 a month compared with £1,537 a year ago, while rents in the south-east also declined slightly from £1,007 to £1,003.
Meanwhile, UK wide rents in April were just 0.4 per cent higher than 2016, with the average monthly rent now standing at £904, the lowest rental price inflation figure since February 2010.
The index from HomeLet also shows that Wales, the North East of England and Scotland saw the highest levels of rental price inflation during April.
Experts say quantities of residential property built over the past few years is now coming on to the market in the capital, and the increase in supply is taking its toll.
HomeLet’s chief executive officer, Martin Totty, said: “Rents have been rising at a more modest pace across the whole of the UK in recent months, with lower levels of rental price inflation and even falling rents in areas of the country where prices were previously rising most quickly.
“We continue to see landlords’ and letting agents weighing tenant affordability considerations very seriously."
Separate findings from lettings agency Your Move also reported a sharp fall in rents in March.
Declining rents mean extra pressure on landlords, who are already reeling from the first stage of phasing out mortgage interest tax relief, introduced in April.
The Council of Mortgage Lenders said lending in March was £21.4bn, down 19 per cent on the year before, and this was ‘almost entirely due to landlords withdrawing from the market’.

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