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Rate of rent rises expected to out-pace house price increases

Rental demand continued to rise over the past three months, the latest RICS UK Residential Market Survey has reported.

At the same time, landlord instructions to lettings agents remain in decline, and ‘near-term rental growth expectations remain elevated’.

The surveyors’ professional body measures letting agents’ experiences and expectations by comparing the numbers who respond one way or the other to various questions.

Some 48 per cent more letting agents reported a rise in demand for rental property than those who did not. And 13 per cent more reported a fall, in rental property instructions than those who did not. And a massive 58 per cent more agents said they expected rents to rise than those who did not.

‘At the five-year time horizon, growth in rents is expected to outpace that for house prices, with the gap widening in recent months. Rents are now anticipated to rise by a little over 5 per cent per annum at the headline level through to 2027’, said RICS.

Agent Alexander McNeil, of Huddersfield firm Bramleys, told the RICS that there had been a ‘reduction in private rented sector as many landlords divest’. It is hard to see rent levels changing much in the short term, he said.

Bath agent Marcus Arundell of Homelet said that ‘moving into summer and still no let up, application demand and rents at a peak with chronically low stock levels’.