Nearly a third of landlords reported rising tenant demand during the three months to the end of September, the highest level since the third quarter of 2016.

The survey of more than 700 landlords also found one in 10 landlords reporting significant growth.

However, a clear regional divide in tenant demand appeared, with the strongest increases in the North West and South West, where almost half of landlords saw growth, followed by the East Midlands.

The weakest demand was seen in central London, with just 16 per cent of landlords seeing growth in the last three months.

Outer London was slightly stronger, with a quarter of landlords recording rising demand.

Paragon Bank managing director of mortgages Richard Rowntree said: “The record levels of tenant demand we saw being reported by the likes of Rightmove and Zoopla when the housing market reopened in May has started to feed through to landlords as tenants reassess where and how they want to live.

“Central London is clearly seeing the impact of Airbnb style landlords moving property into long-term lettings, as well as a desire for larger properties.

“Outside of London, demand is buoyant from the East of England, where 27 per cent of landlords are reporting growth in demand, to the North East and South West, where nearly half of respondents are telling us they are seeing positive growth.”

He added: “We expect this to continue for the foreseeable future and there’s a number of factors we’re seeing at play.

For example, there’s been growth in homeowners taking advantage of strong prices and selling to move into rented, people are looking to secure a new home ahead of entering a potential second lockdown, while students left it late to secure property for the new academic year.”