Rents rise in September may signal "upward trend" in prices

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Rental prices rose by 2.1 per cent year-on-year in September (Source: Getty)

British rents fell in September, despite a year-on-year increase in the average prices, according to figures published today.

The average UK rent rose by 2.1 per cent year-on-year last month, after rents bounced back up by 2.4 per cent in the year to August, according to rental insurers Homelet.

Rents rose year-on-year in every region of the UK barring the South East, with Greater London prices rising by 1.9 per cent in the year to September.

Read more: DEBATE: Could rent controls solve the housing crisis?

However, the annual rise disguised a monthly UK-wide fall of 1.3 per cent, with the South East and South West seeing rents dip by more than 2.5 per cent compared to August.

Average monthly rent is now £927, with London and the South East skewing the data heavily. Renters in the capital pay an eye-watering average of £1,593 per month, according to the September figures. Outside London and the South East the average rent is £678 per month.

Rental prices weakened markedly in spring and summer, according to the index, but rose strongly in August at the fastest rate of annual inflation in rental prices since November.

The latest year-on-year increase in British rents may signal “the re-emergence of an upward trend” in prices, according to Martin Totty, HomeLet’s chief executive. “It wouldn't be surprising if landlords, seeing their own current and anticipated cost increases, seek to pass these costs on to tenants to preserve the returns from capital they have invested in residential property assets.”

Some analysts expect the coming ban on letting agency fees to impact rents as landlords are pick up the costs, while higher costs for landlords could come from an interest rate rise in November as well as tax changes on buy-to-let mortgages.

Read more: British rental prices bounce back upwards after period of slower rises

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