Stratford renters face paying more than £1,000 a month as average costs increase
AVERAGE monthly household rents in the private sector have crashed through the £1,000 barrier in the Stratford district for the first time.
According to figures published by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, the average monthly private rent for tenants in this district now stands at £1,005. The amount has risen from £866 in 2020, £888 in 2021 and £946 in 2022.
The reason being given for the rise in rents across the country is that many landlords are selling their properties and reducing the availability of rented accommodation. According to Hamptons Estate Agents, around 140,000 people nationwide who bought properties in the 1990s to rent out, sold them last year to fund their retirements. The agency warned that numbers were likely to continue rising and new landlords were not filling the gap left behind.
The campaign group Generation Rent, which works to raise awareness of the issues facing tenants, said people shouldn’t be surprised by the trend of ageing landlords selling up.
Spokesman Dan Wilson Craw: “For nearly the past three decades the government has relied on amateurs saving for retirement to provide a large proportion of the nation’s homes. The real problem is the chronic failure to build enough homes in places where people want to live.”
Cllr Jo Barker (Cons, Shipston South), the portfolio holder for homes, health and wellbeing on the district council, told the Herald she was “not surprised” by the increases in private rents.
She said: “It’s yet another blow to people, with inflation where it is. The council will have to do more. I would hope – and it’s only a hope – that it will get involved in council house building, or with housing associations who will buy up houses that aren’t selling.”
It was important that more social housing was made available to people at more affordable rents, said Cllr Barker. And she added: “One thing that does worry me is people having to move and uproot their whole families because of properties being sold and they can’t afford the rents. All this has an effect on children and schools much more than you might think.”
The increase in private sector rents has prompted the Lib Dems to ask the ruling Conservatives on Stratford District Council a number of questions at the full meeting of the authority on Monday (24th April).
Cllr Susan Juned (Lib Dem, Alcester Town), the leader of the opposition group, points out that the district has faced rising private sector rents of 6.2 per cent in the past year.
She said that the number of landlords opting to sell their properties is increasing the number of no-fault evictions. Cllr Juned wants to know:
n How these changes are impacting the district council
n Whether some areas are affected more than others
Meanwhile Cllr Manuela Perteghella (Lib Dem, Welford), who is also her party’s parliamentary candidate at the next general election, declared: “We’re building lots of houses but many are of the wrong sort. We badly need more affordable houses and homes to rent, at rent levels that ordinary people can afford. Without this how can we expect key workers in the NHS and our other services to be able to afford to live in our district?”