Currently viewing the tag: "prs rents"

UK PRS Rents Highest In EuropePRS Rents Still Increasing

Rent paid by tenants in the UK’s private rental sector, (PRS), increased by 2.1% in the 12 months up to and including March 2015, according to the latest published figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), drawing claims from the National Housing Federation (NHF), that the UK is the most expensive country to rent property in within the European union.

In the 12 months to March 2015 UK PRS rents increased by:

  • 2.1% in England
  • 2.1% in Scotland
  • 0.8% in Wales

UK PRS rents are the highest in Europe, taking up 40% of tenant income despite having the shortest length of secure tenancies. In comparison our European counterparts only pay an average of 28% of their income on rent.

The NHF analysed the ONS data and found that on average UK PRS rents of approximately £750 per month for properties were almost double the rental costs of dwellings in countries like Germany and Holland, where average earnings are similar. However, it is worse for tenants in shared UK properties, who typically spent around 55% of their income on rent.

Across Europe, 43% of tenants had moved property in the last five years while in the UK this figure was more like 77%.

When the figures are analysed more closely it works out that approximately 23 minutes of every hour worked by UK PRS tenants is spent on rent; elsewhere in Europe, it is more like only 17 minutes.

The NHF also showed that the UK has repeatedly failed to invest in its own housing stock when compared to European standards, between 1996 and 2011 only 3% of the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was invested in UK housing, compared to 6% in Germany and 5% in France.

Other findings from the analysis include the fact that 72% of tenants renting in the UK private rental sector are employed compared to 62% of residential owner-occupiers.

NHF chief executive David Orr commented on the findings, stating: “UK tenants get a raw deal in comparison to their continental counterparts. High rents are just one symptom of the UK’s housing crisis, as a nation, we are simply not building enough houses due to under investment and problems with the land market.”

UK Rental Prices Have Not Grown As Much As The Media Hype Suggests

UK Rental Prices Have Not Grown As Much As The Media Hype Suggests

UK Rental Price Growth Has Slowed Down
Everywhere Except London

The hype suggesting spiralling rental prices in the UK’s private rental sector (PRS) are out of control, has been previously used by tenants and even some agents to brow beat private sector landlords into lowering the expected monthly rental prices has been exposed as a myth by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Apart from the ridiculous rental situation in London, where rental prices for single dwellings are getting beyond affordable, landlords across the rest of the UK are lucky if property rental prices just about keep pace with inflation.

Private rental sector rental prices are flat in monetary terms when viewed year on year even if there has been some seasonal adjustment for the Spring & Summer lettings market.

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Average PRS Rents Hit New High

Average PRS Rents Hit New High

Buy-To-Let Property Investors Benefit
From PRS Rent Increases

The average rent in the UK’s private rented sector has increased to approximately £757 (GBP) per month, the highest level ever recorded, as rental prices increase by 1.8% on the previous month.

The data is from the latest Buy-To-Let Index, published by LSL property services.

PRS rents are 2.1% higher than they were in September 2012 and tenant demand is still strong with lettings activity growing by 9.2% over the last 12 months.

Average PRS rents are now £13 (GBP) per month higher than the previous all time record set in October 2012, when monthly PRS rents averaged £744 (GBP) per month.

Nine out of 10 UK regions saw rents rise between August and September 2013 with the fastest monthly rise observed in the South East, where PRS rents are 3.3% higher than they were a month ago.

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ARLA reveals rental demand continues to outstrip supply

Demand for good quality rental properties continues to outstrip supply, despite the rise in average rental prices, according to the latest figures from the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA).

The letting industry regulatory body’s bi-annual survey of its members revealed that more than 58% are still experiencing a significant gap between supply and demand.

This is an increase of 3% from the previous survey carried out in December 2011.

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Single-Let And Small Scale Landlords Account For Up To

 80% of All New UK Mortgage Applications.

There has been a large rise in the number of ‘Single-Let Landlords’ (landlords with just one buy-to-let property), and small scale landlords (those typically with less than four properties), over recent months up to November 2012.

Rise In Single Let Landlords Accounts For 80% Of All New Mortgage Applications

Rise In Single Let Landlords Accounts For 80% Of All New Mortgage Applications

This is the result of many new investors being drawn in to the buy to let markets by high rents and increasing yields. Average private residential property rents have risen month on month over the last nine months and it is now estimated that Single Let and small scale Landlordsnow account for approximately 80 % of all new buy to let mortgage applications.

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Reducing PRS Rental Prices Could Kick Start The UK Economy

Reducing PRS Rental Prices Could Kick Start The UK Economy

Whilst the UK Government have presented the nation with the idea of building more affordable homes in the social sector and promises of further regulation, licensing and reform of the private rented sector, there is still a case that lower rental prices are vital for economic recovery.

Pete Jefferys, part of the policy team at Shelter stated that lower PRS rent is vital for the UK’s economic recovery, if average PRS rents in the UK had risen in line with the rate of inflation since the year 2000, rather than well above, then tenants would have an extra £8 Billion (GBP) per year of disposable income.

Increasing rents for private rental sector tenants are beginning to become a sensitive political issue, especially in areas of high demand including London and the South East.

Private sector tenants are trapped between the expense of renting and unobtainable or unaffordable mortgages, with banks and mortgage lenders tightening lending criteria and demanding larger deposits for property purchases than they were prior to the financial crisis.

While this trap is frustrating for those who want to buy and devastating for low-income families with few other options, it may also be having an impact on the economic recovery of the UK.

Tenants renting property in the private rental sector are increasingly paying more in housing costs than those buying a property with a mortgage.

For some low-income tenant renters, the proportion of their wage going towards rent can be over 70%, especially in London.

Lower PRS Rent Vital To UK Economy

Lower PRS Rent Vital To UK Economy

The homeless charity, Shelter say they have collected evidence that increasing housing costs and financial uncertainties mean that tenants are attempting to reduce spending on many consumer goods and services, and due to falling household incomes, increasing numbers of tenants are being forced to use high cost credit to make up any rental shortfall, incurring high repayment charges and eating up even more disposable income.

The cumulative gap between rental costs and wages was growing in London before the 2007/8 financial crisis but now in 2012 it has grown even wider.

There are 8.5 Million tenants renting property in the UK, in London tenants pay on average, between 42 – 46% of their income on rent and economists say that there is a strong case that a lot of potential consumer spending is being lost and that the UK faces a demand crisis because there isn’t enough being spent on British products in shops to get people back into work.

Many landlords rent out just one or two properties and are using the rental income to pay off mortgages and earn a small yield. The result is that the amount of money being paid in rent is financing mortgage debt and not being re-circulated into the country’s economy. If banks were re-lending this money, again it might not be a problem. But, as we’re constantly hearing – bank lending has dropped massively since 2008.

Even if all rent went straight into the pockets of landlords there would still be a case that this is reducing spending in the economy. Higher earners spend proportionately less of their income compared to lower earners and on average landlords have higher incomes.

If average PRS rents in the UK had risen in line with the rate of inflation since the start of the new millennia rather than well above it, renters would have more than *£2,000 (GBP) extra per household per year

That would have meant far more going directly into the pockets of those on a lower income to be spent within the UK economy than the proposed VAT cut (offered by the Labour opposition and would cost the Treasury £12 Billion (GBP) per year).

High price rents in the PRS increase the housing benefit bill, which currently costs the government more than £20 Billion (GBP) per year, having doubled over the last decade.

The balance of UK Government spending on housing has shifted away from house building to covering housing benefits.

If 8% of private rental sector tenants moved to more affordable social homes, the UK Government would save up to £200 Million (GBP) per year.

Building more affordable council houses has the advantage of reducing pressure on the private rented sector and would increase spending power dramatically for those families who are in social rented properties.

A recent Shelter report stated the case for reform of the UK private rental sector proposing five year, inflation linked tenancies with two month break clauses for tenants.

The benefits of the Shelter proposition include stability for tenant families, more disposable income over the long term and are even supposed to be beneficial for many landlords’ business models.

Building more affordable social homes and reform of the private rented sector would help millions of tenants, currently struggling with the third highest housing costs in Europe, it would also put enough cash back into people’s pockets to sustain an increase in consumer demand that is not reliant on personal debt nor expensive tax cuts.

*3.62 million tenant households in 2010/11 paid on average £95 rent per week, if the median of £78 per week average rent from 2000/01 had risen with CPI inflation, rather than the actual 2010/11 median figure of £137 per week. Across the UK this equates to £7.9 Billion (GBP) extra rent paid per year, so on average a renting family would have £42 per week extra disposable income, or £2,184 (GBP) per year.

(*Figures from the English Housing Survey and Office for National Statistics).

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