Residential property prices could be on the verge of falling sharply largely because of the government’s buy-to-let tax changes, according the head of Landlord Mortgages.
The changes to stamp duty, tax relief and new tougher mortgage application rules could make it harder to make a profit from letting property, which in turn could deter investment in the sector and drive home prices down.
Aside from the extra 3% stamp duty surcharge, the amount landlords can claim in mortgage interest relief will be limited to 20% from 2017, which will eat into many landlords’ rental returns, especially higher and additional rate taxpayers, making buy-to-let a far less attractive proposition.
Lee Grandin of Landlord Mortgages accepts that no one can call when a market bubble will burst, but believes that the buy-to-let tax changes could be a catalyst for a "major price correction".
He told the press: "If commentators are stating the property market is overvalued then the sudden supply of property post buy-to-let tax changes could well be the catalyst for a major price correction."
Grandin added: "It was never going to be politically acceptable or sustainable to have Tom, Dick and Harry own a buy-to-let portfolio.
"Take note: A price correction where the losers are Tom, Dick and Harry with a buy-to-let portfolio and the banks who supported them is a vote winner."