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North and south rent divide starts to close as prices rise

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North and south rent divide starts to close as prices rise

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Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Finance

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The disparity between rent costs in the south and north of England started to close in 2013's last quarter, according to the latest rental index from Move with Us.

Costs in the North East rose by an average £58 (9.16%) while tenants in the traditionally high-performing regions of Greater London and the South East dropped by an average £12 and £24 respectively.

Prices in Wales also rose in last year's final quarter, by £59 (9.62%).

However, Move with Us has highlighted that the south's price drops followed strong growth in the first part of 2013.

Robin King, Move with Us director, said: “Recent data from the Office for National Statistics show how the number of adults between the ages of 20 and 34 living with their parents has increased by a quarter in the last 18 years. Rising asking rents have been a big contributing factor to this rise making it harder for first time buyers to rent while at the same time being able to save the deposit to buy their own home.

“Overall average rents are rising in the UK, and coupled with the lack of supply for prospective buyers in the sales market, means more people are renting. Landlords have responded to the change in the market by raising the standard of rental properties and lengthening contract terms to provide tenants with security and better living conditions so renting is a viable alternative to buying.

“The drop in average rents in Greater London and the South East is seasonally typical as demand for rental properties decreases in the run up to Christmas. We expect that this will correct itself in the first quarter of 2014 as we are already seeing an influx of tenants looking to move at the start of the New Year.

“Average asking rents in the usually slower performing regions such as Wales and the North East went against the seasonal trend in the last quarter of 2013 and increased, closing the gap between the cheapest and most expensive places for tenants to rent in the country. This is likely to have been caused by the lack of supply in the sales market in the North of England which pushed rental prices up by almost 10% in areas such as Wales and the North East.”

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