The government’s decision to introduce a raft of changes, including buy-to-let tax hikes, to create what the former chancellor George Osborne described as a “level playing field” between homeowners and investors, has so far failed to deter the vast majority of private landlords, new research shows.
From a landlord’s perspective, it has been a tough couple of years, with various measures introduced to curb the growth of buy-to-let investors.
Aside from the introduction of the stamp duty surcharge in April last year, the 10% wear and tear tax relief for landlords who rent out furnished homes has been abolished, leaving them free to only claim for the amount that they have spent, while mortgage tax relief is set to be phased out from next month.
In addition, the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee has now been granted greater powers over the buy-to-let market, which has made it harder to get a mortgage.
So whilst investing in property has long been perceived to be a safe alternative to the failing of the pensions industry, the reality is that for some people buy-to-let suddenly looks like an unattractive proposition.
But new research by Simply Business has found that the vast majority of landlords - 83% - are not put off by these changes and still believe there is a future for landlords in the UK.
However, almost half - 48% - of landlords think it is getting harder to keep going, even if they do not intend to quit investing in the private rented sector.
Moreover, 12% think it is only possible to be a landlord in Britain if you are already established.
Despite some negativity, more than one in five - 22% - of landlords are completely undeterred and think the idea that there might not be a future for landlords in the UK is nonsense.