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Surge in rental properties on the market

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The total number of rental properties in the UK has soared, according to new figures.

Research by credit experts Experian showed the number of properties listed ‘to let’ increased by 11.4% between April and July compared to the same quarter last year, recording five times as much growth as the sales market over the same time period.

The report said there was a 2.3% increase in number of fresh sellers nationwide in Q2 2013.

It also showed that the number of homes falling into the more affordable price brackets fell with 0.4% fewer properties for sale under £250,000.

In contrast, there were significant increases at the higher end of the sales market with properties marketed between £250,001-£500,000 and £500,001 or more – up 4% and 14%.

Jonathan Westley of Experian said: “Some lenders and estate agents are reporting improvement in the housing market, with the Council of Mortgage Lenders data showing confidence and activity growing strongly at the bottom of the property ladder.

“Our latest figures do, however, show that this trend is not being seen across the whole of the UK. In some regions, the housing market remains challenging for first time buyers, particularly in London, which is constraining activity levels for lower value properties and keeping a lid on prices in many areas. This is reflected in the surge in rental properties on the market.”

Properties priced under £100,000 and £100,001-£250,000 in the North West fell by 10% and 8% respectively. The region saw the biggest fall in overall properties for sale, down nearly 7%, but saw its rental market thrive as nearly 8% more homes for rent appeared on the market.

After London, the North West stood out as the region to see the biggest retraction in affordable houses for sale in Q2 2013, compared to the same quarter in 2012, despite being the cheapest region to buy a property in the country and boasting more properties valued at under £100,000 on the market than any other region.

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