The Association of Residential Letting Agents says the number of tenants successfully negotiating rent reductions has hit an all time low - another likely manifestation of landlords’ resolve after the fees ban.
The latest ARLA market snapshot shows the number of tenants negotiating a rent reduction fell to 1.1 per cent last month from 1.6 per cent in November; the December tally was the lowest figure since records began.
And the number of agents witnessing rent increases remained at 32 per cent in December; year-on-year, this figure is hugely up from 16 per cent in December 2017 and 18 per cent in December 2018.
Meanwhile demand from prospective tenants fell last month with 56 prospective tenants registered per member branch, down from 67 in November. Demand from prospective tenants has now fallen for the third consecutive month.
However, the number of properties managed per branch rose last month from 203 to 206; annual supply is up from 200 in December 2017 and 193 in December 2018.
“Since the tenant fees ban came into effect, our data shows that rents reached an all-time high last year. While we have seen a slight drop in the number of agents witnessing landlords increasing rents since then, overall rents remain high and now it seems that tenants are finding it harder than ever to negotiate a reduction in rent” explains David Cox, chief executive of ARLA.
“As rents continue to rise, tenants will find it even more difficult to find suitable accommodation. Now that we have a new government in place, it’s important that long overdue legislative changes are implemented to make the market attractive again for both tenants and landlords.”