London Rents 'Double Those Across Rest Of UK'
Tenants in London now pay rents that double those across the rest of Britain, according to new research.
Average rents across the UK rose by 6.3% over the past year and now stand at £862 a month compared to £811 a year ago, the HomeLet Rental Index's study found.
But tenants in the capital face average monthly rents of £1,412, compared to £694 for the rest of the UK once London is excluded, and saw prices soar 11.2% in the year up to June 2014.
Out of the country's 12 regions, only the North East of England and Scotland saw minor falls in rental prices, with year-on-year drops of 2.3% and 3.8% respectively.
Martin Totty, chief executive of Barbon Insurance Group - the parent company of†HomeLet Rental Index, said: "As a rule of thumb, for a rental property to be affordable, a tenant's gross income must be at least two-and-a-half times his or her annual rent.
"Our data shows that rents in London have pushed beyond that boundary, with the South East and South West of England close behind."
However, Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said that contrary to this survey, figures from the Office for National Statistics show private rents are falling in real terms.
"While inflation currently stands at 1.9%, nationally rents have risen by just 1%," he said.
"Building more rented housing will be the most effective way of controlling rent levels in the future - excessive red tape would just push up rents and reduce choice.
"That's why we're investing £1bn in our Build to Rent fund, which is on track to have work started on 10,000 newly built homes specifically for private rent.
"On top of this, we're also introducing a range of measures to give landlords and tenants the confidence they need that they're getting a fair deal, including through a new 'How to Rent' guide so those renting privately know their rights and what to expect."
The HomeLet Rental Index's findings broken down by region, annual variation in average rental value, and average rental value per year:
Greater London 11.2% £1,412 (£16,944)
East Anglia 6.4% £781 (£9,372)
Wales 4.7% £584 (£7,008)
South West 4.6% £813 (£9,756)
South East 4.4% £863 (£10,356)
West Midlands 4.3% £625 (£7,500)
North West 2.9% £665 (£7,980)
Yorkshire & Humber 2.2% £600 (£7,200)
Northern Ireland 2% £567 (£6,804)
East Midlands 0.2% £579 (£6,948)
North East -2.3% £507 (£6,084)
Scotland -3.8% £578 (£6,936)
Overall 6.3% £862 (£10,344)