Rents continued to rise year-on-year in March while the number of homes available to let fell, according to the latest data from Home.co.uk.
Figures from the property website reveal that the supply of rental housing stock on letting agents’ books fell by 15% in March compared with the same month last year.
The lack of available homes for renters is particularly pronounced in London, where the supply of newly available properties is down 21% year-on-year, taking the three-year decline in the capital’s rental stock to 51%.
The drop in the number of homes to let has placed upward pressure on rental values, with the average rent for a two-bedroomed property increasing between March 2019 and March 2020 in all regions except East Anglia, where it has remained the same at £850 per calendar month.
In Greater London, the average monthly rent off a two-bedroomed property in the six months to March 2019 compared to the six months to March 2020 rose from £1,695 to £1,755.
Over the corresponding period, the same property type saw rents increase in the South East from £950 per calendar month (pcm) to £975pcm; in the East Midlands, Scotland and Wales from £600pcm to £625pcm; from £485pcm to £495pcm in the North East; from £535pcm to £550pcm in Northern Ireland; and from £593pcm to £600pcm in the North West.
Elsewhere, the increase was £550pcm to £575pcm in Yorkshire and Humber; from £650pcm to £675pcm in the West Midlands; and from £750pcm to £775pcm in the South West.
Growth in rents means that landlords in many regions are seeing their rental yields increase or remain high.
From March 2019 to March 2020, the average rental yield rose in five regions: in Yorkshire and Humber from 5.3% to 5.4%; in the South West from 4.6% to 4.7%; in the East Midlands from 5.1% to 5.2%; in the North East from 6.1% to 6.3%; and in Wales from 5.7% to 5.8%.
Yields have remained the same over the last year in the West Midlands at 5.4%, while rental returns remain high in the following regions despite slight decreases: in Greater London from 5.1% to 5%; in Northern Ireland from 6.8% to 6.6%; in the North West from 5.9% to 5.8%; in the South East from 4.6% to 4.5%; in East Anglia from 4.5% to 4.4%; and in Scotland from 6.7% to 6.5%.