Tenants are being warned to expect a “rough ride” as the number facing rent hikes rose.
Just over a quarter of landlords increased rents in January, according to ARLA Propertymark’s latest survey of its members.
In the last year the rate of rent rises has accelerated by 7%.
ARLA has warned that many private landlords are selling up as their costs rise under a government clampdown of the buy-to-let market.
Meanwhile, the number of new private rental properties on the market per branch was 197 in January, compared to 193 in December. Totals for people newly registered with agents rose to 73 per lettings agency branch from 50 in the previous month.
David Cox, chief executive of ARLA Propertymark, said: “This month’s results are another huge blow for tenants.
“With demand increasing by 46% from December, and rents starting to rise in response to all of the cost increases landlords have experienced over the last few years, tenants are in for a rough ride.
“Last month, there were three landlords selling their buy-to-let properties per branch, and as landlords continue to exit the market, rent prices will only continue to rise.”
“With the Tenant Fees Act passing its final hurdle in the House of Commons and receiving Royal Assent this month, tenants will continue bearing the brunt, as agents and landlords start preparing for a post-tenant fees world.”
The RICS agreed that rent rises are inevitable as the supply wanes and demand from tenants continues to rise.
Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, said: “According to our most recent survey the lettings market is continuing to see instructions fall away as investors respond to the emerging fiscal and regulatory landscape.
“Demand has also now picked up in each of the last three quarters, following a flatter trend in the early part of 2018. This is resulting in feedback consistent with further increases in rents across the country, to a greater or lesser degree, over the next 12 months.”