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UK rental market bounces back with greater activity anticipated over summer

Rental market activity bounced back in May, defying fears that a slowdown had struck the market, following a slump the previous month, according to Agency Express.

Following cooler market conditions throughout the UK letting market in April, the latest Agency Express Property Activity Index reveals that national figures for properties ‘let’ in May saw a 13.8% month-on-month rise while new listings ‘to let’ rose 15.8%.

Looking at performance across the UK, 11 of the 12 regions recorded by the Property Activity Index reported increases in new listings to let as well as homes let. 

May’s top performing region was the South East of England, with homes to let increasing by 29.2% month-on-month, while properties let rose to sit at 31.4%.

Various other regions also performed well last month, including the North East (25.6%), London (23.7%), Wales (23.5%) and the South West (21.6%) when it came to properties to let, while the West Midlands (23.4%), East Midlands (21.8%), South West (17.9%) and Wales (13.3%) also saw big increases in the number of homes let.

The greatest fall in this month’s Property Activity Index was recorded in the West Midlands, with figures for new listings to let falling for a second consecutive month to sit at -2.4%, while a marginal decline was also recorded in East Anglia with properties let sitting at -0.9%.

However, looking over the Property Activity Index’s historical records we can see that a slowdown in May is not uncommon for these regions and that this year’s figures are better than those recorded 12 months earlier.

Stephen Watson, managing director of Agency Express, said: “The Property Activity Index historically reports a decline in activity throughout May for many regions. This month however we have witnessed a good level of activity across the UK lettings market with some regional pockets recording record bests. Moving in to June and July we would expect a further increase in activity.” 

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