A study by consumer intelligence service TwentyCi shows a continued severe under-supply of properties in the private rental sector.
It says that in the second quarter of this year new instructions dropped almost one per cent and now sit 24 per cent lower than in 2019.
Rents are now on average £1,762 per month, £100 higher than last quarter and almost £400 higher than they were four years ago.
With supply in contraction and demand looking set to increase even further as would-be buyers delay their purchases due to mortgage challenges, prices are likely to get even higher over the coming months, the study warns.
Add to this the trend that renters are staying put for longer, on average around five years (with renters in Wales staying in their properties for more than seven years) this means that there are even fewer properties becoming available to rent.
Availability of stock has meant there has been a drop in lets across all regions of the UK, except in Inner London, Glasgow and Edinburgh, where there is a greater volume of rental properties available as proportion of the housing stock.
Northern Ireland and the South West of England experienced the biggest drop in the number of lets both experiencing a decrease of 15 per cent, whilst Bristol, Newcastle and Plymouth were the most impacted cities experiencing drops of 16, 14 and 13 per cent respectively.
A TwentyCi spokesperson says: “The rental sector is where a real impasse remains, and structural forces are leading to a perfect storm of increasing demand and reducing supply.”