There was a sharp fall in both the number of new property listings and properties let during the last month, according to a new report.
The most recent Agency Express Property Activity Index reveals that following a good improvement in activity levels during March, figures fell significantly in April.
Properties let in April saw a 22.1% month-on-month fall, while new listings ‘to let’ slid by 19.7%.
These figures appear consistent with recent ones released by the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA Propertymark). This data suggests that more landlords are looking to exit the sector as a result of higher stamp duty costs and the phasing out of mortgage interest tax relief.
Assessing the performance across Britain, all 12 regions assessed by the Property Activity Index recorded falls in new listings ‘to let’ as well as homes actually let.
The regions seeing the smallest declines in properties ‘to let’ were:
- West Midlands -13.4%
- East Midlands -13.5%
- North West -14.1%
In terms of properties let, the smallest declines were seen in:
- Scotland -2.8%
- Yorkshire and Humberside -13.3%
- North West -18.2%
London saw the most profound falls in both the volumes of listings ‘let’ and ‘to let,’ with falls of -26.1% and -24.3% respectively.
Stephen Watson, managing director of Agency Express, observed: ‘This month we have witnessed a slowdown across the UK rental market. While our figures will be affected by the bank holiday weekends and reduced number of working days, the fall in activity seems greater than what we would anticipate.’
‘As we now move in to what is usually a robust period for the market, it will be interesting to see what advances are made in light of the difficulties that landlords and agents face,’ he added.