Top agency says government seen as anti-landlord, pure and simple
More than 92 per cent of landlords believe the government is anti-landlord and want the Chancellor to back them in this week’s Autumn Statement.
A snap survey conducted by Martin & Co – the UK’s largest lettings and property management franchise business with 190 offices – reveals the anger felt by the majority of landlords surveyed by the agency.
Some 783 landlords responded and the most vociferous comments came from those who have been landlords for less than five years and own five or fewer investment properties.
More than 74 per cent of landlords would like to see this year’s stamp duty surcharge on additional properties to be scrapped; more than 50 per cent want the Chancellor to reverse changes in mortgage interest tax relief, which come into force in April 2017.
A majority of landlords surveyed – 61 per cent – felt uncertain about the outlook for the property market in 2017, though the majority of negative responses came from landlords who have owned investment properties for less than five years.
The flip-side is that long-term landlords feel more secure within the UK buy to let sector.
“The government seems to be set on making life as difficult as possible for property investors, while ignoring the fact that landlords provide essential rental properties in locations where there are housing shortages and no realistic ability to buy” explains Ian Wilson, chief executive of Martin & Co.
“People are relying on the private rented sector to supply property, so we need the Chancellor to back our landlords and encourage them to continue to invest and provide a vital pipeline of homes for people who simply cannot afford to buy.
Martin & Co has also released some of its clients’ responses.
One landlord commented: “Why make it more difficult for landlords when the UK has such a shortage of affordable rentable properties? It will just put off landlords.”
Another landlord said: “In a period of housing shortage, the government should be encouraging investment. The policy is flawed because it assumes that everyone wants to buy which, for a variety of reasons, is not true.”
When asked whether the planning system should be changed to encourage more Build to Rent development, the newer landlords were in favour of this, with the largest group in favour based in the south east.
One landlord stated: “Any system which increases the quantity of high quality of rental accommodation must be good for the country.”