ARLA Propertymark (Association of Residential Letting Agents) has issued its August Private Rented Sector (PRS) Report. It found that the number of letting agents who saw landlords increasing rents for tenants rose to 35% in August – the highest level since July 2015, when 37% saw rents increase. Year on year, this figure has risen dramatically from 27% in August 2016
Meanwhile, only 2% of tenants successfully negotiated a rent reduction, a drop from July 2017, when 2.5% managed to lower their rent costs.
The number of properties managed per member branch decreased marginally in August, to 189 – down from 192 in July. However, this is higher than last August where agents managed 183 on average.
Demand from prospective new tenants increased to 72 in August, from 70 in July, while in August, the number landlords selling their buy-to-let properties remained the same as May, June and July this year, with an average of three for sale per branch.
David Cox, ARLA Propertymark chief executive, said: “This month’s findings paint another bleak picture for tenants. In November last year, only 16% of agents saw landlords increasing rent costs, but that figure now stands at 35% – which is likely to continue rising. Landlords have had a rough ride at the hands of policy changes at Government level, and it’s becoming clear that these additional costs are now being passed onto tenants.”