Renter affordability stretched as rental values keep rising

24th April 2023

Renter affordability is becoming increasingly stretched as growth in private rental prices continues. On average renters now pay 26.8% of their gross income on rent, compared to 25.7% three years ago.

Annual rental growth in the UK was 9.8% in the year to March, based on new private tenancies (DRMA). Growth of 4.9% was recorded by the ONS, which includes pre-existing tenancies and new lets.

Rental price growth is currently stronger than wage growth, at 6.6% in December to February. Wage growth was also lower than inflation, adding additional pressure to household incomes.

The latest survey of agents by RICS indicates demand for rental properties continues to outpace available supply. However rising affordability ratios are likely to start to limit rental growth.