The rents being paid to landlords in all parts of the UK fell in real terms during 2017, research suggests.
The findings from HomeLet reveal that rents in November rose by 0.7%.
That's the 11th straight month that rent increases have fallen behind the inflation rate.
According to HomeLet, the average being paid in rent for a new agreement is now £904, which compares to £898 in November 2016.
The Office for National Statistics says the UK's inflation rate is now at 3.1% with rents trailing behind for nearly a year- the last occurrence of rents exceeding inflation was in December 2016.
Large regional variations with rents
The firm’s data hides large variations among regions with rents in some parts rising more quickly.
For instance, rents in the East Midlands, the north east and south west of England and Northern Ireland all saw rent rises in November of more than 3%.
Landlords in Greater London, the south-east and east all saw negative growth in rents.
The figures highlight that the average rent for a new tenancy in London is now £1,530, compared to October’s £1,556.
HomeLet's chief executive, Martin Totty, said: “We’ve seen modest rent price inflation and rents are higher now than 12 months ago in many regions of the UK but we haven’t seen a return of the rapid increases that we saw last in the first six months of 2016.”
Rents are stable but landlords are selling up
The HomeLet findings chime with those from lettings agents Belvoir who say that rents are stable but there are landlords who are now choosing to sell up.
Their data reveals that in the third quarter of 2017, the average rent being paid is just £3 a month more than it was in 2016.
The firm's chief executive, Dorian Gonsalves, said: “The average lowest rent was £595 in the north west and also £621 for the north east. The highest rents were in the south east with £1,052 and in London with £1,486.”
Counties monitored have seen rents fall
He added that half of the 50 counties monitored have seen rents fall including Surrey, Berkshire, West Sussex, Hertfordshire and London.
Now most of the firm’s offices are predicting that rents at the end of 2017 will change little and most rents for flats have remained static over the year.
Mr Gonsalves says that the growing number of Belvoir's offices are also reporting that some landlords are now selling up which is boosting the supply of homes for sale.