Supply slows for UK rental market

The latest data from the Agency Express Property Activity Index has revealed a year on year decline in supply for the UK rental market.

National figures for new rental properties coming on to the market sat at 2.6%, while figures in 2015 sat at a robust 11.5%. Properties 'Let' during the period remained on trend falling by -6.3%, marginally less than the figure recorded in 2015. 

Across in the individual regions recorded by the Property Activity Index, eight of the twelve reported increases in new properties ‘To Let’ while only four recorded increases in properties ‘Let’.

Prominent performing regions included:

Properties ‘To Let’

  • East Midlands 20.4%
  • West Midlands 13.4%
  • Central England 12.4%
  • Scotland 10.4%
  • North West 6.1%

Properties ‘Let By’

  • South East 12.7%
  • Scotland 11.7%
  • North East 7.9%

All regions other than Scotland recorded some level decline compared to figures in 2015.

After two consecutive months of decline Scotland bounced back with robust increases. New properties ‘To Let’ sat at 10.4% and properties ‘Let’ at 11.7%. The increases marked a record best October for the region, although it is evident that demand continues to outpace supply. Over a three month rolling period figures still remain down with new rental properties at -1.70% and properties ‘Let’ at -1.60%.

The largest declines in this month’s Property Activity Index were made in Yorkshire & Humberside. Figures for new rental properties sat at -3.6% and figures for properties ‘Let’ which have floundered over the past four months, sat at -14.1%. Looking back over the Property Activity Index’s historical records, we can see that the last decline in figures for October was recorded in 2012.

Commenting on the Property Activity Index Lettings Report, Stephen Watson Managing Director of Agency Express said:  As we look back at the historical data recorded by the Property Activity Index, we can see over the last three years October has been a buoyant month for new rentals across the UK lettings market. However, this year the figures paint a different picture, evident by the drop in supply. Historical trends within the indices also indicate that we should not see a decline in figures until December, but with the current rate of change it will be interesting to see what Novembers and Decembers data brings.

Monthly % Changes for October 2016

% Changes for Aug - October 2016

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

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

New Listings Properties Let
Oct 16 Oct 15 Oct 16 Oct 15
NATIONAL 2.6 11.5 -6.3 -7.2
Central England 12.4 36.1 -1.5 -0.5
East Anglia 0.7 1.8 -15.7 -11
East Midlands 20.4 38.6 1.3 0.6
London -6.2 -1.4 -5.9 -19.6
North East -2.2 24.6 7.9 -6
North West 6.1 2.5 -8.8 -1.6
Scotland 10.4 -1.5 11.7 -22.9
South East 0 0.3 12.7 -17.8
South West -6.3 11.8 -1 -2.2
Wales 2.7 41.4 -21.7 -3.5
West Midlands 13.4 16.8 -18.3 -13.5
Yorks & Humber -3.6 6 -14.1 14.2
New Listings Properties Let
Aug -
Oct 16
Aug -
Oct 15
Aug -
Oct 16
Aug -
Oct 15
NATIONAL -0.1 0.3 -1.4 -4.4
Central England 0.5 5.8 -0.1 -3.7
East Anglia -3.3 -2.7 -3.8 -5.6
East Midlands 6 13.2 -4.9 -0.5
London -0.7 -9.4 0.9 -7.5
North East 1.4 4.4 5.2 0.2
North West 0.2 2.4 -1.5 -0.9
Scotland -1.7 -8.3 -1.6 -11.8
South East 0.6 0.4 5.7 -3.6
South West -0.7 -4.1 -0.3 -6.8
Wales 2 11.9 -4.9 -3.5
West Midlands 1.3 -1.1 -2.7 -3.8
Yorks & Humber -1.2 1.6 -6.5 -2.2
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