48% of landlords are considering divesting due to an increase in regulation and rules, according to new research from Aldermore.
The rule and regulation changes seen recently, including the introduction of a 3% stamp duty on rental/second properties, changes to taxation and more complex mortgage applications, has led to 59% saying it is much harder being a landlord now than five years ago.
68% of respondents feel that recent regulatory changes have been too broad and need to focus more on punishing the rogue landlords. 28% said that regulatory change was the biggest threat to their investment, while others cited tax changes (33%) and high maintenance costs (28%) as barriers. It has also led to increased admin with 40% saying increased rules meant their most recent mortgage application was more difficult than previous.
In addition, it appears to have affected business decisions, with 49% of landlords saying the increase of stamp duty has prevented them from expanding their portfolios. 59% of landlords also believe that the ban on lettings fees may result in landlords raising their rents due to the increased costs put upon them.
The impact of divesting would be wide-ranging; with 53% of landlords believing that private landlords exiting the market would hurt the quality of properties available to tenants. Not only this, but landlords are also a critical part of the housing ecosystem. They service a wide and diverse group of the population but predominantly those in earlier life stages; 32% of their tenants are young couples and 29% are parents with young children.
Despite the pressures landlords are currently feeling, the research revealed that 52% would still recommend becoming a landlord as an investment opportunity.
Aldermore surveyed 1,000 UK-based landlords for the research.
Damian Thompson, group managing director, retail finance at Aldermore, 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.”