The latest figures from the HomeLet Rental Index reveal that rents on new tenancies agreed over the three months to November fell in most areas of the country.
Meanwhile another report from HomeLet suggests that nine in 10 landlords do not intend to raise rents on their existing tenancies during the first six months of 2016.
Rents on new tenancies remained flat or fell slightly in 10 out of 12 UK regions over the three months to November 2015 compared to the three months to October, according to HomeLet data.
Across the country as a whole (excluding London), the average rent on a tenancy signed during the three months to November was £743 a month, 0.7% down on the previous three-month period. In Greater London, the average rent was £1,544, down 1%.
The index shows that just two regions saw rents on new tenancies rise over the three months to November. In Yorkshire and Humberside, rents on new tenancies were 0.8% higher than in the previous three months, averaging £626 a month; in the East Midlands, rents were 1.2% up at £635 a month.
HomeLet research into landlords’ views about the rental market and their expectations for the year ahead revealed that 91% of landlords do not plan to increase the amount of rent they charge on their properties in the next six months.
Even looking further ahead, only 34% of landlords plan to increase rents over the next 12 months.
Martin Totty, Barbon Insurance Group’s chief executive officer, said: “The research reveals the vast majority of landlords enjoy strong relationships with their tenants and are keen to keep them. Just 4% said they were unhappy with their current tenants, while 18% said high tenant turnover was the most stressful part of being a landlord, more than cited on any other single issue.
“Being a landlord is a long term investment and attrition of tenants is not something landlords desire; our own clients tell us they would rather retain a good tenant over the longer period than seek additional income.”