Tenants renting privately in London are paying more than double the national UK average after the last quarter saw a leap in asking rents in the capital.

New data from Rightmove has revealed that in the second quarter of this year, asking rents in London shot up by 3.4% compared to the first three months of the year, to £2,000 per month for the average home. This was well above the national average rent rise which was 2.7% quarter-on-quarter, meaning landlords across the UK are now asking a typical £796 a month for their rented properties.

The research also shows that there has been a fall of 3.5% in the number of available homes to rent in the capital compared to this time last year, which could have contributed to the asking rent rises as tenants face a more competitive rental market.

Fewer landlords in the capital?

It’s the first time since the last quarter of 2014 that London has had the strongest performing rental prices, and the time it takes to let out a property there has also shortened from 44 days to 40 days – although this is still above the 36-day national average.

Rightmove’s housing market analyst Miles Shipside said: “After a few years of more plentiful supply in the London market we’ve now reached a point again where competition among tenants for a great rental home can be very high in the most popular rental areas of the capital.

“This reduced choice could be symptomatic of fewer landlords buying and some selling up as rental returns are being diminished by more onerous tax, and little or no growth in capital appreciation, along with increased demand from tenants.”

The south-east of the country saw the biggest quarterly rent rises of 4.3%, from £1,038 to £1,083, but this was a 0.4% annual decline. Another top-performing region in terms of rental gains was the north-west, which gained 3.2% compared to the first three months of the year, with rents rising from £660 to £640 per month, and this was also a 1.3% increase on an annual basis.

Meanwhile, Scotland‘s landlords were asking 3.4% more in Q2 compared to Q1, as average rental homes were advertised at £674 compared to £652, which was also a 2.8% rise compared to the previous year.