The West Midlands was one of the few regions where rents reduced in August as UK-wide landlords hiked their rents for the seventh month.
The average cost of renting a home in the region fell last month by 1.5 per cent. The West Midlands was the only region aside from Wales, where rents fell by one per cent, to record an decrease.
Rents across the UK rose by 1.4 per cent during the month to £686, the highest level since September 2008, according to LSL Property Services.
The rise, which was the biggest monthly increase since August last year, is being driven by a shortage of properties to rent as increasing numbers of people put plans to buy a home on hold.
David Newnes, estate agency managing director of LSL Property Services, said: “Rents are jumping up as more and more potential home buyers opt to rent.
“People are wary of a crash in house prices and concerned over the effect of government cuts on their own ability to meet long-term financial commitments. Additionally, many can’t get a mortgage at an affordable rate.
“Furthermore, the huge number of reluctant landlords we saw renting out property last year have now had the opportunity to bank their gains and sell up.”
The group said it did not expect rents to start falling again until the current problems in the mortgage market were resolved.
Landlords in the South East made the steepest rent increases during August, hiking their rents by an average of 2.8 per cent, followed by those in London at two per cent.