A report published by the estate agency chain said that 1,500 households moved out of serious rent arrears between the third and fourth quarters of 2015, reversing some of a deteriorating trend throughout the earlier part of the year.
There are now 82,900 households behind by more than two month’s rent, down from 84,200 in the third quarter of 2015.
As a proportion of the entire market, the latest total still represents just 1.6% of tenancies across the UK private rented sector. This compares to a peak proportion of 2.9% of tenants in 2008.
The absolute number of tenants in serious arrears is also mild on a historical basis, considerably below the record 116,600 such cases seen in 2012.
Adrian Gill, director of estate agents Your Move and Reeds Rains, said: “An individual tenant is still extremely unlikely to fall into serious rent arrears. In fact the proportion of renters getting seriously behind on payments has dropped considerably over the longer term. But absolute numbers are now going the right way too. With fewer people at risk from more serious consequences of struggling to pay the rent, this is great news.”