Half of Landlords Ready to Quit Over Stricter Laws and Tax Rules

A leading buy-to-let lender is expecting private landlords to quit the rental market because they are tired of coping with a flood of new laws and tax rules.

Research in March 2020 by Aldermore Bank found that 48% of property investors are considering selling up because of rule changes, including a stamp duty surcharge for second properties, tax increases and harsher mortgage lending rules. 

Two out of three believe new laws to improve standards are too broad and do not capture enough rogue landlords who disobey the law and fly under the enforcement radar. And another 53% feel living standards for tenants will drop due to a landlord exodus, while 59% consider running a buy-to-let business more challenging now than five years ago. 

Many say the 3% stamp duty increase gas stopped them from expanding their portfolios, with 59% expecting to raise rents to counter an increase in letting agent fees. Regardless of their gripes, 52% of landlords recommend investing in buy-to-let.

Damian Thompson, Aldermore’s director of mortgages, said: 

“Private landlords exiting the UK market would mean less choice and likely impact negatively the quality of rental properties for tenants. The number of people renting in the UK has been rapidly growing, up 1.7 million in 10 years, so it is vital there is enough rental supply to meet this demand. 

“Landlords may have been impacted by increased costs and more complex processes in the past five years but the rental market continues to be a strong long-term investment. Landlords will need support and advice on how to manage their portfolios going forward from lenders and the wider industry so they can continue to support the private rented sector the way it needs to be.”

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Investing in a Property

Investing in a private rented property can be achieved in a variety of ways. Sometimes landlords inherit a property that they then turn over to renting. Sometimes owners of properties become unintentional landlords because they are unable or unwilling to sell a property at the value the market currently dictates.