Soaring rents cool off in August but agents warn of imminent rises

Chris Papadopoullos
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RENTS paused for breath in August after blistering increases earlier this year, but agents warn it could just be the quiet before the storm as lettings season picks up in the autumn.

Average rents across England and Wales dipped 0.1 per cent last month, taking annual growth down to 5.5 per cent from July’s record 6.8 per cent, according to figures released today by estate agents Your Move and Reeds Rains. London rents have dipped 0.3 per cent, but compared with August 2014, tenants are paying 10.2 per cent more.

“August has witnessed a break in a series of blistering rent rises,” said Reeds Rains and Your Move director Adrian Gill.

“Yet this mild correction comes on the back of a whole year of acceleration. Rents are rising rapidly on an annual basis, underpinned by an improving economic picture for many potential tenants – and the peak lettings season is only just about to start this autumn.”

Gill warned that the persistently high growth of prices, as is seen in the housing market, could soon become a semi-permanent feature of the rental market. He said that more must be done to boost the country’s housing supply.

Experts have blamed a range of factors for the lack of building such as strict planning rules, skills shortages and a even a lack of companies. Many firms that went under during the financial crisis have not yet been replaced.

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