Friday 19 July 2019 12:01 am

Renter demand soars after tenant fee ban

Tenant demand soared in June as renters rushed to secure new properties following the introduction of new rules to ban letting agent fees. 

In London, demand increased by 13 per cent from May to June compared to a four-year average of four per cent.

Read more: The potential consequences of the tenant fee ban

Nationally the figure increased by seven per cent in contrast to the average one per cent following the introduction of new protections for renters., according to data by Rightmove.

Under the new regulations, tenancy deposits have been capped at five per cent and landlords and agents prevented from charging unnecessary fees.

The increase in demand and the shortage of rental stock means tenants could struggle to secure a new home in the next few months.

Average asking rents outside the capital rose to an all-time high of £817 per month in the second quarter, which may have been exacerbated by agents and landlord raising rents to offset losses caused by the crackdown on fees. 

Agents have also reported a 17 per cent year-on-year  increase in the number of tenants registering to view properties since the ban was enforced on 1 June.

Read more: The tenant fee ban is good for landlords

Richard Davies, head of lettings at Chestertons, said the spike in demand and competition has pushed tenants to pay above asking price to secure a property. 

He said: “Paying over asking price for rental properties in the peak summer lettings season is not too unusual in London, but we have noticed that tenants are more prepared to do so since the fee ban came in, potentially because they feel they are saving money on additional fees so can afford to spend a little more on their monthly rent to secure the right property.”