Record 50,000 flock to rent

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The Independent Online

The home rental market is seeing "unprecedented" demand, with 50,000 new tenants registering for accommodation in the second quarter of this year, research suggests.

The surge in demand has also led to rises in rental prices, the letting agency Countrywide found. The number of potential new tenants registering in the second quarter was 16 per cent higher than in the first three months of the year.

June saw the sharpest increase since the agency began compiling the statistics in 2003, with 18,000 registrations. As a consequence, Countrywide found rents were rising, with four-bedroom homes seeing the highest increase – 4 per cent in the first quarter – as more families turned to renting. John Hards, the co-managing director of Countrywide, said: "The number of tenants entering the market is at an unprecedented level and we have yet to enter the peak season."