Buy to let rents are just keeping pace with inflation, according to the latest data.
Landlords saw a 2.1% rise in rents for the year to the end of October, while the cost of living was up 2.2%.
But the money paid by tenants varied widely across the country.
Rents rose the most in Northern Ireland (4.5%), Scotland (4.2%) and London (4%) – but fell 2.5% in the North East of England and managed a measly 0.3% increase in Wales, says research by tenant referencing firm Homelet.
The average UK buy to let rent in October was £928 a month – up from £909 a month a year ago.
But stripping out the London rent data showed a different story.
In the capital, tenants are paying an average rent of £1,619 a month.
Excluding London, the average UK rent falls to £768 a month – a 1.7% increase for the year.
UK rent data – October 2018
|Region||Ave rent Oct 2018||Ave rent Oct 2017||Change|
|East of England||£908||£901||0.8%|
|Yorkshire & Humberside||£631||£628||0.5%|
Holiday home council tax crackdown
Expats are among thousands of second home owners in Britain suspected of exploiting a loophole to avoid paying council tax.
The government says 47,000 owners claim they let out property as a holiday home.
The law says these owners pay no business rates if the property’s rateable value is less than £12,000 – an exemption that covers 96% of the homes.
But no one checks if theses properties are rented out to holidaymakers, which allows many landlords to use council services for free.
The government wants to close the loophole so more holiday home owners pay council tax and has launched a consultation to discuss the move.
Local Government Minister Rishi Sunak said: “We’re aware of concerns that the current arrangements for valuing second homes for business rates and claiming relief, do not provide strong enough protections against abuse.
“We are seeking views on whether we should strengthen the checks already in place to ensure second-home owners have to pay council tax, while ensuring genuine holiday let businesses are able to demonstrate they are eligible for business rates relief.”