There was an increase in the number of tenants experiencing rent increases in 2019, according to ARLA Propertymark.
The trade body’s latest report shows that the number of tenants experiencing rent hikes hit a record high this year, rising from an average of 26% each month in 2018, to 46% on average this year.
The increase is owed primarily to the impact of the tenant fees ban, with 64% of tenants experiencing rent hikes in August – the highest figure seen this year.
As BTL landlords continued to feel the pinch of tax and regulatory changes, the number of buy-to-let investors selling their properties remained high, at an average of four in 2019. In April, the figure spiked to five per branch.
However, the data also reveals that the supply of rental accommodation increased in 2019, from 187 on average per branch in 2018, to 197 this year.
Agents also reported an increased number of prospective tenants searching for homes in August, when 76 were recorded per branch, compared to 73 on average across the year.
David Cox, chief executive, ARLA Propertymark, said: “It’s no surprise that tenants have suffered intense rent increases this year. We predicted this would happen as soon as the government announced a ban on tenant fees, and since the ban came into force in June, rents costs have continued to spiral.
“Additionally, due to the significant amount of legislation that landlords face, this year they have continued to exit the market, which coupled with Brexit uncertainty and the looming general election has left the sector in a state of despair.
“Unfortunately, next year could go the same way, unless something is done to make the sector a more attractive investment.”