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Private tenants across Great Britain saw their rent increased by 2.6% in the twelve months to April 2016, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The average cost of renting a property outside London rose by 5.1% in the 12 months to April, while tenants in the capital faced a 7.7% increase, according to the latest figures from referencing firm HomeLet.

Average rents in England increased between January 2005 and February 2009, fell between July 2009 and February 2010 and have been increasing steadily since May 2010.

In the twelve months to April 2016, private rental prices increased in each of the nine English regions. Three regions - the East Midlands (8.5%), West Midlands and the East of England - have now broken all-time records for rents according to the ONS. Where as HomeLet said rents were rising faster in Scotland than anywhere else in the UK, with the average up by 11.4% year-on-year to £704 a month. The next highest rise was in the east Midlands, where new tenancies cost 7.9% more than in April 2015 at an average of £646 a month.

"Ironically, the government’s efforts to help first-time buyers by penalising investors, could end up hindering them as a shortage of rental properties will drive up rents in the long term, making it more difficult to save up for a deposit,” commented Paul Smith, chief executive of Haart.

Last week Your Move and Reeds Rains reported that average rents are now increasing at the fastest rate since last autumn.


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