Countrywide Quarterly Lettings Index –Q1 2015

Countrywide Residential Lettings

Monday, April 20, 2015

Rents remain stable for renewed and occupied tenancies but continue to increase for newly let properties

Newly let rental properties

Analysis from Countrywide plc, the UK’s largest lettings agent, shows that average rents for newly let properties increased 4.5% in Q1 2015 to £894pcm, up from £853pcm in Q4 2014.

By property size - In Q1 2015 average monthly rent increased for one and two bedroom properties when compared to Q4 2015, up 0.8% and 0.4% to £730pcm and £817pcm respectively. Three and four plus bedroom properties saw rents remain stable with just a 0.1% decrease to £939 and £1,435pcm, respectively.

However, when looking at March 2015 compared to February 2015 rent increased for three and four bedroom properties by 1.6% and 16.4%. Two bedroom properties see no change in average monthly rent and one bedroom properties a 1.4% decrease.

By region - The average monthly rent in Q1 2015 decreased in over half of UK regions, with the greatest decrease in the South East of England, down 1.9% on Q4 2014 to £1,097pcm. Average rents remain unchanged in the North but increased in Central London, up 3.1% to £2,561pcm. Month on month, rents increased in the majority of regions, with the South East seeing the greatest increase, up 14.8% in March compared to February. Average rent decreased the greatest in Central London, down 4.4%.

Renewed tenancies

The average UK rent for renewed tenancies in March is £848pcm, an increase of 0.8% month-on-month and 2.3% year-on-year.

By property size - Increases and decreases in average monthly rent for renewed tenancies remained relatively unchanged in March when compared to February, apart from one bedroom properties which saw a 4.3% increase. Two bedroom properties see a 0.6% increase, three bedroom properties see a 0.6% decrease, whilst for four plus bedroom properties the average rent remains unchanged.

By region - The only region to see a decrease in rents in March is Central London, down 2.3% on February to £2,485pcm. All other regions saw no change or an increase in rents, with Wales seeing the greatest increase, up 13% to £654pcm. Year-on-year, the East of England is the only region to see a decrease in rents, down 0.9% in March 2015 compared to March 2014.

All occupied rental properties

The average rent for all occupied rental properties is £840pcm, an increase of 0.2% month-on-month and 2.4% year-on-year.

By property size - As per renewed tenancies, rents for occupied rental properties see marginal changes in rents month on month, with one, two and three bedroom properties seeing an increase of 0.7% 0.3% and 0.2% to £693pcm, £773pcm and £879pcm respectively. Four plus bedroom properties see a small decrease of just 0.1% to £1,325pcm.

By region - There are marginal changes in rents per region in March too, with the South West, South East and the Midlands seeing now change, The North, East of England, Scotland and Wales seeing a 0.2% increase, Greater London seeing a 0.4% increase and Central London a 1.4% increase.

Commenting on the findings, Nick Dunning, Group Commercial Director, Countrywide plc, said:

“Stable rents and declining arrears reflect healthier economic conditions in the UK rental market in the run up to the General Election. Zero inflation and rising incomes means that on average the cost of living has decreased and this is having a positive impact of consumer’s confidence and disposable income.”

Graph A – Changes in average monthly rent by region

Q1 2015 changes in average monthly rent by region.png

Graph B - Changes in average rent by newly let, occupied and renewed properties

Changes in average rent by newly let, occupied and renewed properties.png



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