Rents are up across all UK regions

Room rents have increased across all UK regions, with the 50 biggest towns and cities all seeing a year-on-year increase, and 40 of them also hitting record levels, new data from SpareRoom shows.

The flatshare website reports that the latest increase in room rents is due to a ‘perfect storm’ of low supply, high demand and rocketing energy costs being passed on through rent increases.

The data shows that average room rents in London passed £800 per calendar (pcm) for the first time.

Rents in the capital reached £815 in Q2 2022, up 15% from £708 in Q2 2021. It is not just the capital where rents have skyrocketed; Northern Ireland was up 17%, followed by the North East and Wales – both up 13% year-on-year.

These record high rents are adding to the affordability crisis – a survey of over 15,000 renters revealed almost four in five (79%) have either had to move to a new area or are currently looking at cheaper areas because they feel priced out.

The UK’s 50 largest towns and cities all saw an increase in room rents, with Sunderland (up 21%), Belfast (up 20%) and Cardiff (up 18%) seeing the highest YOY increases. 40 out of the 50 largest towns and cities saw their highest room rents on record in Q2 2022, including Manchester (£543) and Liverpool (£428).

Out of these cities, London saw the highest increase in demand vs supply (up 154%), followed by Slough (up 122%) and Aberdeen (up 116%). This was driven by an increase in demand and a decrease in supply. The only top town to see a decrease in demand vs supply was Blackpool (down 4% YOY).

Every London region saw an increase in demand vs supply, with West Central witnessing the biggest change, up 233% YOY. Again, this is driven by an increase in demand and a drop in supply. Rents were up across all London regions year on year, with East Central (up 22% to £996 per month), followed by West Central and East – both up 17%, to £1,044pcm and £793pcm respectively – seeing the biggest increases.

The London postcodes that saw the biggest increases YOY were W1 (West End/Soho) up 32% to £1,229, SW1 (Westminster / Belgravia / Pimlico) up 30% to £1,097 and SE11 (Kennington) up 26% to £904. On the flip side, the only London postcodes in Q2 2022 to see a YOY drop in rents was W7 (Hanwell), down 2% to £632.

The cheapest area to rent a room in the capital is still SE2 (Abbey Wood) at £616, followed by E12 (Manor Park) at £620 and E6 (East Ham) at £621. As always, East London remains the most popular place to rent in London, with the top three spots going to E14 (Canary Wharf/Docklands), E1 (Shoreditch/Whitechapel) and E3 (Bow).

Outside of the capital, the most expensive areas to rent in Q2 2022 were Kingston Upon Thames (£727), Twickenham (£711) and Barnet (£709). Conversely, the cheapest areas to rent a room were Darlington at £391, Huddersfield at £394 and Middlesbrough at £396.

Matt Hutchinson, SpareRoom director, commented: “We’ve had our busiest June on record in terms of people using SpareRoom to find somewhere to live. At the same time, supply of rental properties has plummeted, meaning rents are on the up almost everywhere. When you add to that the spike in energy costs, which are being passed on to many flatsharers in the form of increased rents, it’s stretching an already unaffordable rental market to breaking point.

“With inflation higher than it’s been for decades, and energy bills set to rise again in October, just before winter kicks in, renters are going to really struggle. It’s time for government to realise that handing out money to help people pay their rent isn’t the long-term solution – we need serious policies to provide affordable housing for everyone.”


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One Comment

  1. AcornsRNuts

    What a surprise saidnobody recently.


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