There was a significant fall in the supply of new properties listed to rent in London in 2018 with the number of tenants looking for a home reaching its highest ever level, according to an agent report.
The quarterly London lettings report from Foxtons shows that supply fell by 13% at a time when more people than every were looking for a home to rent in the capital.
It says that with almost 175,000 tenants registered in 2018, the average number of registrations per new rental listings increased to just under nine, its highest ever level.
Indeed, the number of renter registrations over the course of 2018 compared to 2017 was 8% higher across all of London and demand did not slow down in the fourth quarter which is traditionally a slower market.
According to Sarah Tonkinson of Foxtons it is good news for landlords for the start of 2019. She pointed out that the average weekly rent is now £456, up 2.6% year on year.
The average weekly rent for a studio flat was £289, up 1.5% year on year, for a one bed flat it was £366, up 2.2%, for a two bed flat £461, an annual rise of 1.6% and for a three bed flat it was £658, up 3.9%.
A breakdown of the figures show that Zone 2 saw the biggest increase in tenant registrations with a 13% rise in demand while supply fell by 11%.
Zone 1 saw the highest rental increases of 2018, specifically with larger properties with three or more bedrooms seeing the biggest hikes.
Gross yields for flats rose over 2018 from 4.5% to 4.9% but this is in contrast to the annual rate of return, which slowed significantly to 3.6% from 7.8% in 2017.