Rising rents chal­leng­ing for new home buy­ers

Belfast Telegraph - Propertynews - - News -

A NEW re­port has shown a sharp rise in rents in North­ern Ire­land last year.

While still the cheap­est re­gion in the UK for av­er­age rent costs, the re­port by the De­posit Pro­tec­tion Ser­vice shows North­ern Ire­land had the high­est per­cent­age in­crease in 2017, with a rise of 3.66% to £531.74.

Across the UK av­er­age rents rose by 1.63% in 2017 to around £ 773.74 a month.

How­ever, the rate of growth halved com­pared to 2016 when av­er­age UK rent rose by 3.25%.

The re­port also showed that North­ern Ire­land saw the high­est in­crease across the UK for rent as a pro­por­tion of salary with rents now rep­re­sent­ing 24.73% of the av­er­age salary.

Co- Own­er­ship, North­ern Ire­land’s main provider of shared own­er­ship, has warned that the rise in pri­vate rental prop­er­ties could cre­ate chal­lenges for new buy­ers.

Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Mark Gra­ham said: “It’s im­por­tant we have a healthy pri­vate rent sec­tor for those in­di­vid­u­als for whom home­own­er­ship isn’t right for at any par­tic­u­lar time, but equally it’s im­por­tant we have a healthy res­i­den­tial housing mar­ket to sup­port the start and com­ple­tion of new de­vel­op­ments to ad­dress our es­ti­mated an­nual short­fall of around 2,000 homes.”

Mr Gra­ham con­tin­ued: “If rent as a pro­por­tion of salary con­tin­ues to in­crease in North­ern Ire­land, which now stands at al­most 25%, then this could have a po­ten­tial knock on ef­fect where we see fewer new build and re­sale com­ple­tions with first- time buy­ers as a re­sult of them be­ing un­able to save to af­ford a de­posit.”

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