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Lettings market booms as millions seek new homes after lockdown

ARLA Propertymark says agents report spike in applications for properties but warns rents will soon rise as stock dwindles.

Nigel Lewis

lettings

Lettings agents have reported a booming rental market with rising demand for property as tenants look for new lifestyles and locations after months of lockdown.

ARLA Propertymark’s latest lettings market report says the average number of new prospective tenants registered per branch jumped to 84 in March, up from February’s figure of 82 – the third consecutive monthly increase.

West Midlands agents saw the highest number of new tenants registered at 157, while Scotland’s saw the lowest, with an average of 31 new prospective tenants.

Tenants experiencing rent rises on renewal increased last month; 60% of agents registered landlords increasing their rent compared to 49% in February.

The number of tenants successfully negotiating rent reductions fell to 1.7% in March, down from 2%, which is the lowest number recorded since October last year.

But despite this fizzy market, the number of properties managed per letting agent branch fell from 195 in February to 193.

The West Midlands had the highest number of properties managed per letting agent branch at 260, while the capital’s agents experienced the lowest amount of rental stock with an average of 128 properties managed per branch.

ARLA Propertymark’s chief policy advisor, Mark Hayward, says: “As demand rises and the number of properties decreases, rent prices will inflate, but we’d encourage letting agents to continue to support landlords and their tenants throughout the ongoing Covid-19 difficulties where possible and ultimately it is positive to see rent flowing and incomes returning for many people.”

Read more about rent reductions.

April 29, 2021

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