Newly released data from specialist mortgage lender Foundation Home Loans has revealed that nearly three quarters (70%) of landlords in the UK believe that the government will interfere further in both the buy-to-let and private rental sectors this year.
Nearly three quarters (73%) of the landlords who are worried about this anticipate it being something like a minimum tenancy term law, or that House in multiple occupation (HMOs) and multi-unit blocks are going to change.
72% of landlords questioned also think that individual licensing for all landlords and their properties is likely to be introduced, and 38% can see a rental cap introduced in the near future.
The research, undertaken by consumer insight consultancy BVA BDRC, was carried out in January of 2020 through 791 online interviews. It also asked landlords whether they were accepting of a rental cap, with. 77% not in favour, 12% giving a maybe, 2% definitely in support and 9% who weren’t sure.
Another question they were asked is what they would do in the event of a rent cap introduction in the private market sector. 35% said they would immediately increase the rent of all of their properties to the maximum allowed, 33% said they would think about selling some of their portfolio, 20% weren’t sure, while 19% would think about leaving the sector altogether. 10% said nothing would change for them.
The December General Election was another topic that was covered. When asked whether the landlords believed that the GE would be positive or negative overall, 26% thought that the result was a net positive, 28% thought it’d negatively affect them more, and 38% thought neither. There was a trend however, that landlords with larger portfolios were more likely to see the result as a positive.
When asked for their reasoning, those who described the result as positive cited the new-found certainty regarding Brexit, that was up in the air throughout the whole winter. It was also generally uplifting to landlords that the Labour Party had not won, as the Conservative Party were traditionally more ‘friendly’ to landlords. Those who felt it was a negative were generally worried about ‘no-fault’ S21 evictions being taken away, increased legislation and more ‘anti-landlord’ laws being passed.
The abolishing of no-fault S21 evictions was something that worried over half of those asked. 53% of landlords said they would immediately lose a lot of confidence in their portfolio, with another 30% saying that it would cause them to lose some confidence. 34% said that this law would cause them to stop buying new properties, 31% said that they would sell some properties, and 33% said that they would consider exiting the sector altogether.
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