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Renting in London 200% more than rest of Britain

The average cost of renting a property in Britain increased by £7 in October, according to figures from Move With Us, with advertised rents in London rising but still £42 down on last year. However, the monthly increase of 1.47% in average rents means that the capital is still around 209% more expensive than the rest of the country. Robin King, Director of Move with Us, said: “The surprise for October has been the sudden growth of approximately £25 in the average rents in the East Midlands, North East and Wales. All three of these regions performed unimpressively over recent months and these unexpected peaks mean that the markets are expected to finish the year much closer to the advertised rents of October 2012, and in the case of the East Midlands, outperforming this level.” Meanwhile, LSL Property Services reports that tenant arrears are at their lowest since 2008. It estimates average rents across England and Wales rose to £758 per month in October while the number of new tenancies agreed across England and Wales increased by 7.4% compared to October 2012. David Newnes, director of LSL Property Services, said: “At a time when a seasonal slowdown would usually be expected rents are up again. The lettings market appears to be experiencing an extended Indian summer. Normally we can expect the rush of early autumn to fade into a late autumn hibernation. Even as the nights draw in, demand for homes to rent seems unabated, and still well ahead of a year ago. While buying a home is certainly getting easier, it’s the private rental market which is taking... read more

Buyers typically spend 33 minutes on deciding on a property

Buyers typically spend just 33 minutes looking around a property before they make one of the most expensive decisions of their lives, it has been revealed. The competitive housing market means buyers are having to make ‘snap decisions’, according to the survey by insurers Aviva. It also found that one in four buyers make just one visit to a property before taking their decision. The hasty decisions means buyers are missing out on potentially costly maintenance issues, Aviva warned. The survey suggested 31 per cent of buyers did not make any specific checks for issues when viewing their future home. The least common checks performed by buyers are for blocked guttering, invasive plans such as Japanese knotweed and defective chimney stacks and pots. Heather Smith, of insurers Aviva, said: “Renewed competition and rising prices have combined to make many buyers more pressurized to snap up a property quickly. “Your future home could be showing symptoms of potential maintenance or structural issues that could cause you trouble down the line. Most of these are fixable, you just need to know the signs to look out for and you do need to prepare financially. “Defective chimneys and Japanese knotweed in particular can be really nasty, with costs to fix running into four or even five figures.” The findings also suggested that as many as 40,000 people a year buy a property without viewing it at all. The most common unanticipated problems found by buyers include plumbing issues, damp, and cracks in the walls or ceilings, the survey... read more