Momentum for UK lettings market in May

Following the usual seasonal slowdown in April, May has remained true to trend reporting increases across the UK rental market. National month on month figures for new listings ‘To Let’ sat at a buoyant 9.5% and properties ‘Let’ at 5.3%.

Looking back at the Property Activity Index’s historical data we can see that this year’s figures are marginally down compared to those recorded in 2018, but over a three-month rolling period the figures for new listings are like for like.

The upward trend continued across the individual regions recorded by the Property Activity Index. 11 of the 12 regions reported increases in new listing ‘To Let’ and 10 reported increases in properties ‘Let’.

London and the South West were this month’s top performers. New listing in the capital saw a robust increase at 21.5% and properties ‘Let’ at 10.9%, but year on year figures were down. Figures for new listings in the South West rose to 20.1% and 13.9% for properties ‘Let’, but again figures for new listings were down year on year.

Wales also reported a robust lettings period with figures for properties ‘Let’ at 29%; the largest increase in figures for the month since 2015.

Other regions to record increases included:

Properties ‘To Let’

  • Central England 17.8%
  • East Anglia 14.7%
  • West Midlands 11.1%
  • Yorkshire & Humberside 9.9%
  • East Midlands 8.2%

Properties ‘Let By’

  • North West 18.6%
  • Scotland 16.4%
  • Central England 5.1%
  • East Midlands 3.9%
  • West Midlands 3%

The largest decline in this month’s index was reported in Yorkshire & Humberside. Figures for properties ‘Let’ sat at -9.4%, a larger decline in activity compared to twelve months previous. However, over a three-month rolling period figures are more positive at 0.50%.

Commenting on the latest Property Activity Index lettings report, Stephen Watson Managing Director of Agency Express said: May has historically been a slower month for board movements. However, over the last two years we have seen a shift in this trend. Year on year figures are starting to rise and this month we have seen some overall growth for the UK lettings market. As we move in to June which is traditionally a buoyant month market we would expect to see a further increase in pace.

Monthly % Changes for May 2019

% Changes for Mar - May 2019

New Listings
% Change over last 12 months vs Previous 12 months

Properties Let
% Change over last 12 months vs Previous 12 months

New ListingsProperties Let
May 19May 18May 19May 18
NATIONAL9.53.65.32
Central England17.812.65.114
East Anglia14.70.6-0.5-5.7
East Midlands8.20.93.91.4
London21.5-11.310.97.1
North East4.510.92.83.4
North West2.1-2.218.6-7.5
Scotland-4.2516.413.5
South East0.7-2.6-5.5-5.4
South West20.114.513.9-0.9
Wales1.1-3.829-1.3
West Midlands11.114.4331
Yorks & Humber9.92.4-9.4-4.2
New ListingsProperties Let
Mar -
Sep 19
Mar -
May 18
Mar -
May 19
Mar -
May 18
NATIONAL1.91.90.9-0.9
Central England7.57.43.94.3
East Anglia1-0.2-1.9-3.5
East Midlands0.1-3-1.8-7.6
London-1.8-0.4-4.40
North East-5.110.2-2.48.3
North West0.90.91.7-3.1
Scotland5.65.414.11.1
South East-4.2-1.9-3-7.3
South West2.83.51.44.4
Wales5.4-0.84.4-6.6
West Midlands5.94.54.43.3
Yorks & Humber0.51.90.50.4
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