ARLA Propertymark has released its Private Rented Sector report for July, which shows that tenant demand has increased 13 per cent annually, while rental supply has fallen 4 per cent within the same time frame.
This amounts to 79 prospective tenants per letting agent (the highest level yet in 2018, and the highest since September 2017) versus 70 a year ago.
In terms of supply, ARLA reports that each letting agent has 184 properties on offer, down from 191 in June and 192 year-on-year. The research sample comprises 191 ARLA members, polled in early August.
Meanwhile, the report states that 31 per cent of tenants had their rents pushed up in July (down from 35 per cent in June). This number also stood at 31 per cent in July 2017.
This continuing supply and demand imbalance is an issue brought up earlier this month in the RICS UK residential market survey, which forecast rent increases of up to 15 per cent by 2023 if the situation continued.
ARLA Propertymark chief executive David Cox says: “Buy-to-let investors are being pushed out of the market by increasing costs and continued regulatory change, and new landlords are being deterred from entering… and as supply falls, competition among tenants increases, which pushes up rent costs.
“To put tenants back in the driving seat, we need more homes available to rent, and the only way this will be achieved is if the government makes the market more attractive for BTL investors.”