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Central London Home Rents Fall in January From September High

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Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) -- The cost of renting a home in central London fell in January from the previous month while remaining higher than a year earlier, Knight Frank LLP said.

Residential rents fell 0.2 percent in January from December and 0.6 percent from an all-time peak in September because of job losses in the City of London, according to an index compiled by the real estate company. January rents were 7 percent higher than a year earlier.

“Tenants who are building deposits for eventual entry to the housing market are looking to reduce their rental costs,” Liam Bailey, head of residential research at Knight Frank, said in a statement. “Our view looking ahead is that rents will begin to rise slightly from the spring onwards.”

The cost of renting, which slid 20 percent between March 2008 and June 2009, jumped 27 percent in the two years to September, reaching the highest level ever, Bailey said.

“At best, disposable income even in central London, only rose by around 8 percent over the same period,” he said. “Landlords are having to accept that continually rising rents are not a fixture of the market.”

The company doesn’t anticipate “significant rises from here,” Bailey said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Firat Kayakiran in London at fkayakiran@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Viljoen at jviljoen@bloomberg.net

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