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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Rents almost stagnating - they've risen just 0.4% in a year

The average rent across England and Wales in February was a mere 0.4 per cent higher than the same point a year ago according to Your Move.

Just a month ago the annual rate of growth was 1.4 per cent.

Now across all of England and Wales the seasonally-adjusted average rent stands at £861 per calendar month. 

South West England was home to faster rent rises than any other region - prices rose by 4.0 per cent in the year to February 2019, reaching an average rent of £703 per calendar month. 

The prosperity in the South West comes as many landlords look beyond London for higher yields and cheaper purchase prices for new properties. Cities in the South West such as Bristol have continued to boom in popularity, with this increased demand causing rents to rise. 

Other beneficiaries of this shift away from the capital were the West Midlands, where prices rose 3.1 per cent, and the Yorkshire and Humber region, which saw rents increase by 2.1 per cent. 

In the West Midlands the average rent now stands at £636 while in Yorkshire that figure is £588. The latter remains the second cheapest place to rent in this survey, just ahead of the North East. In this region the typical rent is £540, 1.0 per cent higher than a year ago. 

London was one of two regions to see prices fall on an annual basis, the other being the East of England. In this region prices fell at a faster rate - 1.8 per cent - to £878 per calendar month. 

In terms of arrears, the Your Move data found that 9.4 per cent of all tenancies were behind, slightly up compared to the 8.8 per cent recorded last month but well down on December’s 10.5 per cent figure. 

The proportion of tenants in arrears remains well below both the recent and all-time highs recorded by Your Move. 

The all-time high of 14.6 per cent was recorded in February 2010 while the most recent high of 13.7 per cent was in July 2017. 

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