There was a further fall in the number of private renters experiencing rent increases in October providing some ‘temporary relief for tenants’, according to ARLA Propertymark.
The trade body for letting agents reports that half - 50% - of agents saw a rise in rent prices last month, which is down from 58% a month earlier.
This is the lowest figure since June 2019, when the number of tenants experiencing rent rises was 55%. But year-on-year, this figure is up from 24% in October 2018, and 22% in October 2017.
Recent softening of market conditions means that the number of tenants successfully negotiating a rent reduction increased to 1.6% in October from 1.2% in September.
Despite this increase, year-on-year this figure is down from 3.7% in October 2018 and 2.5% in October 2017.
The number of properties managed per branch increased by 8% to 201 in October, up from 193 in September, while demand from home hunters registered per branch remained level at 72 on average.
David Cox, ARLA Propertymark chief executive, commented: “This month’s figures show some temporary relief for tenants; however, while the number of landlords increasing rents has fallen, year-on-year the figure remains worryingly high.
“Even looking at the increase in the number of tenants negotiating rent reductions, which should be a positive thing, when comparing year-on-year it is less than half of what it stood at in 2018.
“For far too long, successive governments of all political persuasions have passed significant amounts of complex legislation for landlords making the buy-to-let market a less attractive investment, and this coupled with Brexit uncertainty and a looming general election has left the sector strained.
“Unfortunately, rents are likely to remain high and tenants will continue to feel the pinch.”