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London rents reach record high of £571 per week

rent A row of houses in Elgin Crescent, in Notting Hill, London, where a terraced house is currently for sale for over �12 million. The borough of Kensington and Chelsea is one of the most polarised in Great Britain, with some of the most expensive real estate in the UK just a short walk from several of the most deprived wards in the country - including the area around the Grenfell Tower. Picture date: Wednesday July 12th, 2017. Photo credit should read: Matt Crossick/ EMPICS Entertainment.
The cost of rent in Central London grew almost 30% year on year to average at £643 a week. Photo: Matt Crossick/EMPICS Entertainment (Empics Entertainment)

London residential rents set a new average weekly record in October, with tenants in the capital paying £571 a week.

This exceeded the previous high of £553 per week seen in September 2022, according to property agents Foxtons.

This is a 4% uplift in comparison to September, which would typically be the peak for the lettings market.

Central London rental costs grew almost 30% year on year to an average £643 a week.

Read more: UK house prices to fall in 2023 amid rising mortgage rates – RICS

There were 22 renters competing for every new property in October 2022 — the stiffest competition since 2018.

Applicants’ weekly budgets remained much higher than they typically do in October. The average weekly renter budget in October 2022 was £485, which is over £20 more than the average budget in October 2021.

For the second month in a row Foxtons saw renters spending over their budgets to secure a property. In October 2022, renters spent 101% of their registered budget, a 3% increase compared to October 2021.

“Competition for London lettings is intense,” said Gareth Atkins, Foxtons’ lettings managing director. “We’re seeing a return to renters spending over their registered budget at 101% on average — a number we haven’t seen since before the pandemic.”

There were 22,000 new properties listed in October, the lowest monthly volumes so far this year.

Read more: House prices £4,159 cheaper in November as property market slumps

Sarah Tonkinson, managing director, Institutional PRS and Build to Rent, said: “This October’s £571 average rent prices actually surpassed September’s record high, which is a huge departure from the normal trend.

“Typically, Londoners don’t want to move house around the holidays, and we often help negotiate different tenancy lengths between landlords and tenants, like 15 months instead of 12, to avoid properties coming on the market this time of year.

“Instead, there were 22 applicants per new listing last month, which is higher competition in October than we’ve seen even pre-pandemic in 2019.”

Watch: Will UK house prices ever fall?