Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Chart of the Day
14 April 2022

How UK rents are rising at a record level

The average rent is now 15 per cent higher than in early 2020.

By Afiq Fitri

Tenants across Britain are set to face record rent increases as the cost-of-living crisis deepens. The national average rent is now 15 per cent higher than when the coronavirus pandemic started in early 2020, according to the figures published by the property listings website Rightmove.

In areas outside of London average rent was £1,088 a month for the first quarter of 2022, up 10.8 per cent from the same time last year. This is the first time annual growth has exceeded 10 per cent, Rightmove said.  

The largest increases were in Wales and the South West and North West of England, which all had rises of 18 per cent since early 2020.


In London the average asking rent increased by 14.3 per cent year-on-year -- although it had fallen during the pandemic -- setting a new record of £2,193. Demand from tenants has soared by 81 per cent since the pandemic while the number of available properties to rent has fallen by 47 per cent, creating what Rightmove described as the “most competitive rental market ever recorded”.

Yesterday (13 April) the Commons Public Accounts Committee published a scathing report on the state of private rented housing. More than 580,000 privately rented properties in the country posed “a serious threat to the health and safety of renters”, costing the NHS an estimated £340m each year, the MPs' report said. The report also highlighted a “postcode lottery” for safety, with 21 per cent of rented homes in Yorkshire and the Humber displaying category one hazards, compared with 9 per cent in London.

“Unsafe conditions, overcrowding, harassment, discrimination and dodgy evictions are still a huge issue in the private rented sector,” said Meg Hillier, chairwoman of the committee. “And yet the sector is a growing provider of homes and rents keep rising, meaning that safe, suitable housing is too often out of reach for renters.”

[ See also: This will be the tenth time I have moved in my adult life ]

Content from our partners
How industry is key for net zero
How to ensure net zero brings good growth and green jobs
Flooding is a major risk for our homes
Select and enter your email address Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy