UK rents continue to rise

house of £10s

Rents in England and Wales rose for the ninth consecutive in October, according to a report from LSL Property Services. The average monthly rent is now £720.

But the rate at which rents are rising has slowed, from September to October the cost of renting a home rose 0.2% - the smallest monthly rise since February.

The steady increase in rents is also leading to a rise in the number of tenants falling behind on payments. In October 10.1% of all rent paid was either late or not paid at all, compared with 8.6% in September, LSL is predicting this trend will continue into the new year.

Rising rents are a result of an increase in the number of first-time buyers deciding to rent rather than buy pushing up demand for rental housing.

North/South divide

Rents vary across the country with London still the most expensive region. The average rent in the capital is £1,030 - 5.7% higher than a year ago.

Unsurprisingly rents were highest in the south east of England, with a 1.5% monthly rise, with the east of England coming in second with a 0.8% rise. At the other end of the spectrum rents in the north east fell by 1.4% drop and in Wales there was a 0.8% fall.

"Despite the slower rate of increase, the cost of renting is still rising annually at nearly twice the speed of the average salary and many tenants will need to dedicate a growing portion of their disposable income to the cost of accommodation over the next year," says David Newnes spokesperson for LSL Property Services.