Average rent prices up to almost £800 pcm - but where's seen the biggest increase?

Average rent prices have reached almost £800 pcm, with the biggest increases seen in Wales, new research has revealed.

The report by estate agents Your Move found that tenants typically paid £798 a month in rent in February.

Biggest increase but cheapest rent

The biggest rental increases were in Wales, where they rose 7.7 per cent during the past year to an average of £593 a month.

However, the region is one of the cheapest places to rent a home in the country. The North East at £545 a month and Yorkshire and Humber at £566 were the only regions with cheaper rents than Wales.

Prices remain high in the capital

Rents remain the highest in London at £1,280, more than double of that found in Wales.

However, the capital was one of only two regions that saw rents fall year-on-year, with the other being the South West.

Rents were 1 per cent lower in London compared to a year ago, while in the South West they dropped 1.5 per cent to £662.

Which areas are popular with tenants?

The areas around London have seen rents increase rapidly during the past year as tenants are increasingly choosing to live around the capital rather than in it.

Rents in the East of England grew by 5.5 per cent in the past year to £868, while in the South East average rents increased 3.4 per cent year-on-year to £878.

Are London tenants reaching affordability limits?

Valerie Bannister, lettings director at Your Move, said: “The dramatic rent increases in London have now slowed as people look outside the capital in order to meet their housing aspirations.”

She added that areas in the South East and East of England have traditionally offered much better value than the capital and this has tempted many Londoners to look further afield for rental properties.

According to Bannister “renters in London could be reaching the limits of their affordability.”

Tenants in arrears

The Your Move report also said the proportion of tenants in arrears reduced in February to 8.1 per cent, compared to 9.1 per cent in January.

And it added that the long-term trend is encouraging, with the proportion of tenants in arrears remaining well below the all-time high of 14.6 per cent, which was recorded in February 2010.

Have you increased your rent over the past year? Let us know in the comments

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