Northern regions continue to offer the highest rental yields for landlords across England and Wales, according to the latest data from Your Move.
The letting agent revealed that rent prices in England and Wales edged slightly higher over the 12 months to April, by an average of 0.5%, to reach £861 per month.
The West Midlands overtook the South West as the fastest growing region for rent prices in April. The average rent increased by 4.0% in the year, to hit £641 a month. The South West recorded rent price growth of 3.7% in the same period, to £701.
Other areas to record strong growth included Yorkshire and the Humber, where rents were up by 2.5%, to £589, the North West, where prices stood at £648, following 2.3% growth, and the East Midlands, where rent price growth stood at 2.2%, to reach £666.
At the other end of the spectrum, rents declined in two regions in April – by 1.1% in London and 2.2% in the East of England, where the average rent was £874 as a result.
London remained the most expensive region to rent a home in the UK in April, at an average of £1,262 per month.
The North East remained the cheapest place to rent, at just £538 a month on average.
Once again, northern regions offered the highest rental yields in April, led by properties in the North East, which typically returned 5.0% to landlords, while those in the North West made an average of 4.8%.
This contrasts with an average yield of 3.2% in London, and 3.3% in both the South East and South West.
The average yield in England and Wales was 4.3% in April – the same as March’s figure, but slightly down on the 4.4% recorded in April 2018.
Your Move also reports that tenant finances remained relatively healthy in April, with the proportion of renters struggling with their rent payments standing at 9.1% in the month, which is down from 9.4% in March and February.
Martyn Alderton, the National Lettings Director of Your Move, says: “Across England and Wales, there are those areas which are seeing rents rise, and those where they are flat or falling.
“It is the areas which have seen periods of strong growth in recent years, such as London and the East of England, which have dropped back slightly.”
He continues: “Other areas of the country, including the West Midlands, are starting to catch up and are growing at an attractive rate.
“Regardless of the short-term rent fluctuations, the property market remains a great place to invest, with landlords also enjoying stable returns compared to last month.”