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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Sharp rise in rental arrears - but they're still well below downturn levels

The number of tenants seriously behind on rent has risen by 13.8 per cent. 

An arrears tracking index conducted by letting agencies Your Move and Reeds Rains shows there were 84,200 tenants more than two months behind with paying their rent, as of the end of the third quarter of 2015 - that’s the latest data available.

This is compared to 74,000 in the second quarter. In absolute terms this represents a quarterly increase of 10,200 additional households in potentially serious financial difficulties. 

The agencies claim that on a historical basis, the latest deterioration in serious tenant arrears remains relatively mild and is well below the record 116,600 such cases seen in Q3 2012. However the latest figures represent the highest levels in more than two years.

In part, the increase in absolute numbers of serious arrears due to the overall growth in the size of the UK private rented sector. As a proportion of all private tenancies, just 1.6 per cent are in serious arrears of more than two months, as of Q3 2015. 

This compares to a peak proportion of 2.9 per cent of tenants in Q1 2008. However this proportion has also increased marginally from 1.4 per cent in serious arrears as of Q2 2015.

With regard to evictions, in the third quarter of 2015 there were a total of 26,712 court orders for the eviction of tenants. This is 4.3 per cent lower than was seen in Q2, when seasonally adjusted eviction orders stood at 27,909.

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