The total number of rental properties available for tenants in Britain fell during May, widening the concern over the gap between supply and demand still further.
Data from a report by the Association of Residential Letting Agents indicates that supply of rental property fell by 7% in comparison to April. This represented 179 properties per branch of letting agents who are members of the organisation.
Highlighted in the report are concerns for the capital. Surprisingly, London had the least amount of rental properties per branch, with just 134 recorded in May. This was in comparison to 273 properties in Scotland. 
More concern came with the news that despite rental properties decreasing, demand remained the same. ARLA said that 36 would-be members registered per branch during May, which was the same as the last two months.
Additionally, the report shows that during last month, 34% of ARLA agents recorded rent rises for tenants. This is in comparison to the 27% recorded in January. Those residing in the South West were most affected by monthly rent hikes, with 49% of agents in the region suggesting an increase.
Supply of rental homes drops in May
‘It is worrying to see that there is such as sharp decrease in supply, when we know there is already a struggle to meet housing needs,’ commented David Cox, managing director of ARLA. Despite agreeing that the months following the General Election were always likely to cause uncertainty, Cox believes that low supply and high demand are issues that will continue to plague the market.
‘We are in desperate need of more housing stock in this country and supply and demand isn’t something that will level out overnight. It’s vital that the new government follows their promise of building more houses, so we can free up rental properties and head on the right path to turning the property market around once and for all,’ Cox added.