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UK rental property demand falls to two-year low

Demand for privately-rented flats and houses has fallen to a two-year low, while the supply of properties to rent has risen in fresh evidence of a slowdown in the property market.

The Association of Residential Letting Agents said there were just 26 prospective tenants registered per branch in December, down from 32 the month before and the lowest figure recorded since records began in January 2015.

Meanwhile renters have more properties to choose from. Arla said the number of properties on the books of the typical letting agency branch rose from 185 to 188 on the month. Demand for privately-rented flats and houses has fallen to a two-year low, while the supply of properties to rent has risen in fresh evidence of a slowdown in the property market.

The Association of Residential Letting Agents said there were just 26 prospective tenants registered per branch in December, down from 32 the month before and the lowest figure recorded since records began in January 2015. Meanwhile renters have more properties to choose from. Arla said the number of properties on the books of the typical letting agency branch rose from 185 to 188 on the month.

Action group Generation Rent said tenants should have the upper hand in rent negotiations now that demand is weakening and supply increasing. Spokesman Dan Wilson Craw said: “If demand for rentals are decreasing, renters have another bargaining chip if they are faced with a rent increase: they can argue that their landlord will find it harder to replace them.

“And the forthcoming ban on fees will strengthen their hand further. Without fees to pay on a new home, renters will be able to move much more readily, which will give them more bargaining power should their landlord or agent try to raise the rent.”

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