'It's disgraceful': Landlord is turned into renter by sky-high London rent costs

14 July 2022, 15:48

By Tim Dodd

This former landlord tells Shelagh Fogarty she's had to sell the house in Manchester that she was letting out in order to pay the rising rent on her flat in London.

Average rents in the UK have hit record highs, jumping by more than 20% in areas such as Manchester according to new data.

Property website Rightmove says that the average advertised rent outside of London is 11.8% higher than it was a year ago, while in the capital it is up by 15.8%.

The caller in Brent told Shelagh Fogarty: "I'm in quite a unique situation where I'm kind of being hammered on all ends. I had to move to London for hospital treatment some years ago, and stayed here as a single mum.

"There was a lot more opportunity for my son here than there was in Manchester, where I actually owned a house until quite recently.

"I've had to sell the house [I owned that] I was renting [out] in Manchester to pay for my rent in London.

"There's just no margins up there for any kind of profit. The money I was making was just paying for the mortgage, paying for repairs."

The caller told Shelagh she's paying around £2500 a month for a 2 bed flat in London.

"Luckily my son is now out of university. He's had to leave university and basically go to work because we couldn't afford for him to stay in university," she said.

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The caller insisted that the "real culprits" are letting agents, as she proceeded to explain how her rent was recently increased.

"The agents who were managing this flat emailed me to say that I would be evicted if I didn't agree to another increase in rent," she said.

After getting in touch with the landlord directly, the caller found out that the agents had been "pushing" the landlord for a rent increase by sending them marketing materials that suggested "You're not getting enough for your flat. Let us help you get more".

The caller explained why agents are increasing rents: "They have no stock. Everyone's looking to rent. There's nowhere to rent. So, if they push people out of the flats they already know are available, they can put someone else in, charge more money, and get more commission!"

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