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Rental Rates in England Remain High Through August

England’s rental market maintained its fervour in August. The recent Rental Index from Goodlord reveals that the cost of rent surged by 10% compared to the previous year. Even though there was a slight reduction in average rents after an unprecedented July – with average prices surpassing the £1,300 mark for the first instance – tenants still grapple with substantial prices during the peak season. The duration of void periods in August was more than in July, but they were still significantly shorter than the yearly average.

In terms of specifics, between July and August, there was a minor decline in the average rent, with prices across England reducing by 1.5% to £1,347 for each property. Though this couldn’t outdo July’s record-setting £1,367, August’s figures in 2023 are still 10% higher than the same month in the preceding year. Remarkably, the average rental expenses are 15% greater than the cumulative average for 2023.

Summer often witnesses a surge in prices due to the entrance of student tenants. In this year, such a trend converged with unprecedented strains on the rental sector, propelling prices to unseen levels.

The most significant escalations in average prices were observed in Greater London and the South East. London experienced an 8% increase, while the South East led with a 14% hike in rents.

Conversely, the North West presented a decline of 20% in average prices, reminiscent of last year’s (2022) trend: a notable spike in rents during July, tapering off in August.

Rent prices also decreased in the North East by 6% and the South West by 10%. Both areas had previously seen substantial hikes in rental prices during July.

Regarding void periods, August experienced a marginal increase post the record-breaking stats of July, with the average void periods extending from 9 days to 13 days. Yet, August can be acclaimed as the month with the second shortest void period since July of the preceding year.

The South West witnessed the most dramatic shift, with voids extending from 6 days to 13. The North West followed suit, where the average leapt from 7 days to 14. Both these regions also marked the most significant reductions in average rent prices.

On the other hand, Greater London and the South East, despite their upswing in rental rates, saw no alterations in their average void periods.

William Reeve, CEO of Goodlord, comments:

“There were so many records broken in July, it’s not altogether surprising to see a slight dip in average rents and slightly longer void periods during August. However, when you look at the bigger picture, the market is clearly still running extremely hot. Year-on-year averages for rental costs are significantly increased, with the £1,300 per month barrier now broken for a second month in a row. September often brings with it the annual peak in prices, so it’s likely that we’ll see another month of high rents and short voids before any seasonal shift in pace kicks in.”