Buy to let landlords can now access official rent data for the whole of Northern Ireland for the first time. The Office for National Statistics has published the first Index of Private Rental Prices with an anchor date of January 2015.
Over the period, rents in Northern Ireland have increased by 3.6%. The ONS says that means a tenant paying rent of £500 a month in January 2015 would pay £518 a month in June 2018, the latest date for the data.
“Since January 2015, rents in England have increased more than those in Northern Ireland. The Northern Ireland index moves broadly in line with that of Wales and Scotland until mid-2017 but has since increased at a quicker rate.,” says the ONS. Between January 2015 and June 2018, rents in Wales and Scotland increased by 2.4% and 1.3% respectively.
In the year to June 2018, rents in Northern Ireland increased by 1.7%, compared to 1.1% in Wales, 1% in England and 0.6% in Scotland. The rate of increase was unchanged from the year-on-year figure for May 2018. The UK average rent increase including Northern Ireland for the year to August 2018 was 0.9%.
Northern Ireland was excluded from the data due to a lack of timely and reliable information, says the ONS, but a new partnership with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and Ulster University has improved the dataset.