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27th July 2015

All-time high demand for rented property – particularly in south London hotspots – leads to increase in rental values.

Demand for rental property is at an all-time high, nationally with a 52% increase in email enquiries according to Rightmove’s first quarterly Rental Trends Tracker.

Within London the highest demand was in the more affordable areas of Bexleyheath, Sidcup and Carshalton, and in Battersea, where inquiries rose by 14% due to ongoing redevelopment of the area.

The report shows that rents also increased nationally by 4.2% in the past year. Asking rents outside London jumped by 2.7% in the second quarter of 2015, compared to the capital’s smaller but still substantial increase of 2.0%.

Average asking rents per month in London – £2,052 – are now almost twice that of the second most expensive region, the South East – £1,078. The capital is also almost four times more expensive than the cheapest region, the North East – £534.

It is thought tenants looking for better value outside London have pushed asking rents of properties coming to market in the South East up by 4.1%.

Sam Mitchell, Head of Lettings at Rightmove, commented: “Rents have grown this quarter in nearly all regions of England and Wales, fuelled by demand outstripping supply in many of the sought after areas, especially in the East of England and the more affordable areas of London.

“The smaller rise in the capital is likely to do with the fact that costs in many areas are nearing many people’s affordability ceiling.”

Mr Mitchell added: “Tenants staying longer in a property is contributing to the lack of supply in some areas, and agents tell us that in the most in-demand areas good properties on at the right price are being snapped up within a few days.

“In the fastest moving areas prospective tenants are sending email enquiries to agents within a few minutes of the property being marketed on Rightmove, showing that people need to get in quick and have all of their references ready to have the chance of getting the property they want.

“The substantial rent rise this quarter will offer some encouragement for the buy-to-let sector, following the summer Budget’s announcement of a clampdown on tax relief.”

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