The National Association of Property Buyers says soaring numbers of landlords are looking to sell homes - slashing stock and therefore increasing rents just as some tenants are hit by the cost of living squeeze.
The group says many landlords are quitting as a result of government clampdowns on private renting, including the scrapping of Section 21 eviction powers.
Although the NAPB expresses sympathy with critics of Section 21 it says the timing of the scrapping of the measure risks creating turmoil for people to look to find a rental property.
Spokesperson Jonathan Rolande says: "Our association has seen a sharp rise in the number of landlords now looking to sell, because very often they can get a better price for selling an empty property, than by letting it.
“It’s very important tenants renting a property have protection in place, but by imposing sweeping new powers at this juncture the government also runs the risk of driving out large swathes of landlords in one go.
"The net impact will mean less and less [sic] affordable homes for people to rent. Rental prices in all parts of the UK are already sky high. But we are now facing a crisis for those looking to enter the rental market during the second half of this year.”
The average annual UK rental growth has reached a 13 year high, with rents increasing by 8.3 per cent at the end of 2021, according to Zoopla. The portal says renters now pay on average £969 per month – which is £62 more than at the start of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, the overall increase in rents over the last five years totals 12 per cent, thanks to the decline in rents seen in some areas during the pandemic.
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