Rent asking prices so far in 2017 have slowed to their lowest level since the final quarter of 2014, following a significant increase in the number of available rental properties on the market, new figures reveal.
There has been a 12% rise in the volume of available rental properties listed on Rightmove compared to the corresponding period last year, placing downward pressure on annual asking rent growth across the UK, according to the property website.
The existing annual asking rent growth of 1.8% is the lowest since Q4 2014, and less than half the annual growth of 3.9% recorded in Q1 2016, Rightmove said.
What’s more, the rise in housing stock means that it is taking 10% longer for letting agents to secure suitable tenants than this time last year, and almost 20% longer in London, where asking rents have fallen by 4.2% year-on-year, as the overhang of last year’s buy-to-let surge ahead of the additional stamp duty that came in to play last April leads to more choice for tenants.
“The supply boost following last year’s buy-to-let frenzy in the first few months of the year has continued through to 2017, introducing more competition in the market for letting agents trying to secure suitable tenants for their landlords’ properties,” said Sam Mitchell, Rightmove’s head of letting.
Properties need to stand out even more than before, so carefully considering how your property is presented is really important, according to Mitchell.
She added: “Now might be the right time to encourage landlords to give the place a lick of paint or some new furniture to give them the edge to help secure the right tenant.”