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Rent rises likely as accidental landlords sell up

Surveyors are predicting rents to increase in the new year as accidental landlords return to the sales market.

The latest lettings survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors found that 22% more surveyors expect rents to rise rather than fall in the next three months.

It also found that the supply of rental homes is dwindling, with a net balance of 11% of surveyors are seeing the number of new rental properties coming onto the market falling rather than rising.

RICS says that the recent pick up in the housing market seems to have led to a fall in the number of available home for rent.

In Q3 the number of rental properties fell for the first time since January 2008, slumping to the lowest level for 11 years.

The survey found that while supply of rental property is on the decline, demand is continuing to pick up, which is likely to push up rents.

Some 16% more surveyors saw an increase in tenant demand over the past three months, with London showing the highest number of people looking to rent.

Jeremy Leaf, spokesman for RICS, says: “It seems the current upward trend in the housing market is having a more significant effect on the lettings market, with many of the accidental landlords returning to the sales market to take advantage of the recent price increases.

“As a result the recent oversupply is reversing, with new instructions at the lowest levels we have seen.

“This of course is impacting on prices and tenants no longer have as strong a bargaining power as they did.”

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