The average number of letting agents who saw tenants faced with a higher rent bill hit 55 per cent in June, says new data issued by Arla Propertymark.
This compares with 33 per cent in May, which itself was a previous record high.
Meanwhile, letting agents held an average of 199 properties under management in June, down from 201 in the month before, while tenant demand went up, with house hunters registered per branch rising from 69 to 70 on a monthly basis.
The average number of landlords seeking to exit the buy-to-let market remained at an average of four per branch.
Arla Propertymark chief executive David Cox lays the blame for rising rent costs squarely on the recent tenant fees ban. He says: “Unsurprisingly, rent costs hit a record high in June as tenants suffered the impact of the tenant fee ban. Ever since the government proposed the ban, we warned that tenants would continue to pay the same amount, but the cost would be passed onto tenants through increased rents, rather than upfront costs.
“In addition to the repercussions of the Tenant Fees Act, the proposed abolition of Section 21, coupled with the Mayor of London’s recent call for rent controls, will only cause the sector to shrink further. In turn this will increase pressure on the sector because it will discourage new landlords from investing in the market, causing rents to rise for tenants as less rental accommodation is available.”