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Private rents increase by 2.5%


Private rents paid to landlords rose by 2.5% over the last year, according to official figures from the Office of National Statistics.

In London, rents rose by 3.8% in the year to the end of June. The rest of the UK saw an average rise of 1.7%, which is the fastest rise for two and a half years. The figures also show that rents went up 2.1% in Scotland and 0.8% in Wales.

The rises in rent have overtaken inflation, which currently stands at zero.

Many housing charities have voiced their concerns over the rises, and believe the rents may continue to increase. Housing charity Shelter said the continuing increases mean that many tenants were now paying half of their monthly income to tenants.

Shelter’s chief executive Campbell Robb said:
“When families are losing nearly half their income on sky-high rents each month with barely anything left over to save, how does the government expect to deliver their promise of ‘a home of your own’ for ordinary people?

“The answer is simple – only when politicians invest in building the genuinely affordable homes we so desperately need will they turn this crisis around once and for all. The upcoming spending review is their last chance to show they are serious about this.”

Housing campaigners have now urged the government to act by building more affordable housing.

Jane Tully, the head of insight and engagement at the Money Advice Trust, which runs National Debtline, said:
"While many households will be able to shoulder these increases in housing costs as the economic recovery continues, we fear that rent arrears will continue to increase."

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