Tag Archives: sales

Average rents in England and Wales reach over £800 for first time

Average residential rents in England and Wales hit a record high above £800 for the first time in July with the fastest month on month increase since records began in 2009. Rents peaked in Yorkshire and the Humber, East and West Midlands, and London, according to the data from the latest buy to let index from Your Move and Reeds Rains. On a monthly basis, rents across England and Wales rose by 1.9% to £804 in July, up from £789 the previous month and up 6.8% year on year, the largest annual rise on record. ‘Just when you think the rental market is accelerating at full throttle, it finds a way to shift into a higher gear. We’re seeing rent rises manage to hit record breaking speeds on both monthly and yearly time frames as far back as our data can go,’ said Adrian Gill, director of estate agents Reeds Rains and Your Move, . He explained that with house prices rising and demand outstripping supply in the sales market the demand for rental properties has also begun to outstrip the available stock and this is driving up rents even faster than house prices. ‘A clear and concerted effort towards new-build properties is the most sensible way to address this issue. It boils down to supply and demand. However, it’s not the only possible response. The government could also ensure that we’re making the most efficient use of our small supply of homes, for instance by doing more to make it easier for people to downsize their properties when they want to,’ he added. A regional breakdown of the figures reveals that four of the 10 regions of England and Wales saw record rent peaks in July; London, Yorkshire and the Humber, and the East and West Midlands while every region saw increases compared to last year. Stronger than usual improvements in the West Midlands saw rents rise 3.6% over the 12 months to July 2015, bringing the average rent in the region up to £583. It’s a similar story in the East Midlands, with a 2.5% annual increase carrying rents up to £584. Yorkshire and the Humber, by comparison, edged its way to a new record with a 2% year on year increase to £582 on average. Rents grew 12% on an annual basis in the East of England, to stand at £838 in July. Though it’s second only to London with growth of 12.1%, in terms of the speed of the 12 month improvement, this is actually the first time in 15 months that the rate of year on year rent increases has not accelerated. Only two regions saw falling rents on a monthly basis with a 0.1% month on month drop in Wales and the East of England. Though rents are at a peak, Yorkshire and the Humber saw a modest 0.3% monthly increase. London took the lead with a 3.3% month on month rental increase…. Continue reading

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Private rental growth in UK centred in regional cities, new analysis suggests

The growth of the private rented sector in the UK continues and there is evidence that activity in this market is market is increasingly clustering in cities around the country. New data shows the proportion of those in the private rented sector living in urban areas has risen from 80% to 86% over the last decade, mostly accounted for by regional cities outside London. A new analysis of a range of data, including the most recent English Housing Survey, by real estate firm Knight Frank, suggests that this growth is set to continue. The firm has developed its PRS index, which reflected average yields, into a PRS Yield Guide, produced by Knight Frank consultancy agency and valuation teams which shows a slight tightening in yields for prime PRS deals in the second quarter across the Greater London market, as well as in many of the other key cities except Bristol and Glasgow. Meanwhile, it says that demand for rental property is being underpinned by affordability constraints in many parts of the sales market as well as increased hurdles in the mortgage market. There is also an increasing desire for property with flexible tenure, especially among young professionals, who want to live close to where they work. Tenants are also staying for longer with the English Housing Survey showing that the proportion of those living in rented accommodation reporting that they have lived in their current home for between two and four years rising to 24%, up from 20% a decade ago. Rents are rising across the country, reflecting an increase in wages as well as inflation. They rose by 2.5% in the year to the end of June but there are still wide regional variations in rental growth, just as there is a divergence in entry costs into these markets. The biggest increase in rents has been in Greater London with growth of 3.8% in the 12 months to the end of June, followed by the East of England up 2.6%, the South East up 2.5% and Scotland up 2.1%. In the same period rents have increased by 1.8% in the South West, by 1.7% in the Midlands and by 1.4% in Yorkshire and Humber. Meanwhile the growth over the same period in Wales was 0.8% and the North West and the North East both saw growth of 0.5%. The report also shows how institutional real estate investors are becoming increasingly active in the private rented sector in the regions over the last 12 months. It says they are attracted by the yields achievable and the strong occupier demand in regional centres. Of particular interest to institutions have been private rented sector schemes in Birmingham and Manchester, with a large amount of interest focussed on lot sizes ranging between £20million and £100 million. ‘The increasing entry of institutional investors into the market is a significant positive factor for the PRS, which should lead to an increase in the supply of good… Continue reading

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Prime central London sales up but still 32% down on a year ago

Sales in the prime central London property market increased by 21% in the second quarter of 2015 compared to the previous quarter but are 32% lower than a year ago, according to the latest quarterly data. Prices have fallen marginally, down 0.6% in the second quarter compared to the first three months of the year, according to the latest prime central London report from real estate firm JLL. But it explains that the sales market continues to show resilience and, although cautious, demand has recovered somewhat since the slump before the general election in May. But the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) reform continues to have an effect on the market and buyers and sellers are still assessing the impact of these changes, particularly in the £5 million to £10 million price range. Meanwhile, the sub £2 million market has been the least affected by the election, SDLT, and mansion tax fears with prices rising 2.2% year on year. ‘While transaction levels remain low, particularly in the £3 million to £7 million sector of the prime central London market, there is undoubtedly a noticeable flight to quality,’ said Richard Barber, sales director at W.A.Ellis, part of the JLL Group . ‘Affordability issues, in the face of increased stamp duty costs, have affected purchaser confidence, but high prices per square foot are still being achieved for the most exclusive properties,’ he added. The prime central London lettings market has seen a rise in demand from tenants, while levels of supply have remained high throughout the second quarter, the report also shows. It says that London’s improved economic conditions are causing a rise in rental values, up 1% compared to the first quarter and 1.5% year on year. Overall, lettings transactions have increased by 4% in the second quarter as election uncertainties resulted in some buyers choosing to rent instead. However transactions are down 8% year on year. ‘There has been an increase in rental stock available, mainly as a result of landlords awaiting the outcome of the general election and deciding now to let instead of sell, and these higher stock levels have meant that competition between landlords has increased with properties in optimal condition letting first,’ said Lucy Morton, letting director and head of agency at W.A.Ellis. ‘This has also meant that the market has become very price sensitive with more people turning to the rental sector after being unable to secure finance or find the right property to buy,’ she added. The report concludes that overall, the outlook for the prime central sales market is one of confidence in light of the stable government and low interest rates, with prices expected to increase by 1.5% during 2015, while the lettings market will see rental values increase by around 3% with more people preferring the flexibility of renting. Continue reading

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