Although the overall numbers for annual rent rises is largely flat on a national basis, there are big disparities between the capital and most of the rest of the UK, with some areas seeing substantial increases.
Depending on whose stats you read, rental prices rose somewhere between +0.6% (Homelet) and 1.1% (Zoopla/Hometrack) over the last 12 months. Both modest figures, but in line with expectations.
Rental demand has moderated after a strong post-lockdown recovery but is still some 25% higher than this time last year. However this has not translated into higher rents due to an increased supply of rental homes and stretched affordability.
The averages, as always, do not tell the whole story. According to Grainne Gilmore, Head of Research at Zoopla “A two speed rental market is emerging between London and the rest of the UK, with a demand/supply imbalance supporting rental growth in many cities, while greater supply in London is putting downward pressure on rents.”
London represents such a large proportion of the UK's rental market that it distorts national averages. A closer look at the numbers city by city shows that rents in the capital fell last year by 2.5% to 3.5%, whilst UK ex-London rose by over 2%.
In particular, rental prices in some of the northern cities are on a relentless march upwards, with the North West rising by 6.5% over the year and Yorkshire by 4.5%.