UK rents rise at highest rates since 2016

16th August 2023
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By Kevin Peachey Cost of living correspondent BBC News

The rising cost of renting has again hit its highest level since comparable records began in 2016, with strong demand from tenants.

With fewer properties available to rent in many areas, the mismatch between supply and demand has pushed up costs for many people.

Prices paid by UK renters rose by 5.3% on average in the year to July, the Office for National Statistics said.

The figures come as rising prices continues to squeeze household budgets.

The inflation rate, which measures how the cost of living changes over time, fell to 6.8% in the year to July. Although this was down from 7.9% in June, it is still far above the Bank of England's target of 2%.

High demand from tenants at the same time as landlords reducing the number of available properties is one of the key reasons behind the rent increase.

Competition among renters is so intense that there are 20 requests to view each available property, according to recent figures commissioned by the BBC from property portal Rightmove, up from six in pre-pandemic 2019.

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