Average Monthly Rent Increases by 2.5% to £853 in England and Wales

Rental prices in England and Wales have risen by 2.5% at the start of 2018. This puts the average monthly rent at £853, causing many tenants to worry that they’ll soon be priced out of their property. With this rise in rental prices creating concern amongst regular people, many property experts are arguing that the onus is now on landlords to provide more value for money.

The Facts

This discovery came off the back of a report from Your Move (an estate agency that serves the UK) that took a look at rental prices in the last year. From the beginning of 2017, all the way through to January 2018, rent went up by 2.5% on average throughout England and Wales.

But, as we dive deeper into the report, it shows that a whopping eight out of ten regions experienced increases in rental prices. Which were the two lucky regions not to experience an increase? In the North East of England, there was actually a drop in rental prices of 2% over the course of the year. Needless to say, this was the biggest drop in price out of every region surveyed. The second region to experience a decrease in price was, rather surprisingly, London. Renters here got to enjoy a lovely 0.8% decrease.

Regional Differences

Speaking of London, while the tenants in this city aren’t paying as much as they were last year, they still pay the highest rental price on average out of every other region. Their average came out at £1,276, putting it way above the national average.

However, you can see quite remarkable fluctuations in rental prices through the London region. The Your Move report took a look at different parts based on the Underground Zones and concluded that those in Zone 5 pay the least rent (£1,098.83) and those in Zone 2 pay the most (£1,650.57). So, while you can find places in London that are considerably cheaper than others, even the cheapest Zone comes out at higher than the national average.

Then, compare this to the cheapest region (the North East), and it’s staggering. In January 2018, the north east of England had an average property rental price of just £534! As you can see, that’s well below the national average, and over £1,000 cheaper than the most expensive Zone in London.

If London and the North East were the only regions to experience a fall in rental prices, what regions experienced the biggest rise? From looking at the report, you can easily identify two main regions that both saw a big rise above the national average of 2.5%.

The North West of England, along with the East Midlands, both saw the monthly rent increase by 2.9%. This made the average January 2018 rent in the North West £636, with the East Midlands sitting on £652. So, still nowhere near London standards, but an increase for people living there nonetheless.

What Is Causing The Increase In Rent?

The big question that comes from all of this is; what’s causing the rental prices to go up? Well, the last year did see property prices increase in the UK, which inevitably has a knock-on effect on rental prices. More and more people are looking to rent a home rather than own them, and this increased demand causes landlords to raise prices.

When you look at the two regions with the most growth, some fairly good arguments explain both rises. The East Midlands is home to many big cities such as Birmingham. Recently, this has become a popular place for large corporations to set up businesses. The BBC is an example of this, with their main BBC3 headquarters moving there. As a result, you can argue Birmingham is becoming an attractive place to work, which means more interest in rental properties, driving up the price.

In the Your Move report, it stated that the North West saw a rise because places like Manchester are very desirable as they offer reasonably priced properties in great locations near lots of schools, public transport, and jobs. There’s also a selection of top Universities in the North West, and many high-quality local hospitals. It’s become a very desirable place for families to move to.

What Next?

Will rental prices continue to increase on average throughout England & Wales? It certainly seems so, and Your Move believes landlords now must take things up a notch. They should start offering more amenities, and better value for money. Some suggestions include communal gardens, and incentives to stay for longer.