There has been a sharp rise in the number of landlords using limited companies to manage their buy-to-let portfolios as a consequence of greater government regulation, according to new research.
Fresh data from Mortgages for Business shows that 77% of all buy-to-let purchase applications were made via a corporate vehicle in the first three months of this year, up from 69% of applications in the final quarter of 2016 and just 21% prior to the tax relief changes being announced by the now former chancellor George Osborne in the 2015 Budget statement.
In response to greater demand, the volume of products available to limited company borrowers has risen by more than a third to 266, with limited company rates now at a record low.
From a landlord’s perspective, it has been a tough year, with a raft of changes, including higher stamp duty, tougher mortgage lending conditions and the phasing out of mortgage tax relief from tomorrow (new financial year), leaving many buy-to-let investors with little alternative but to turn to incorporation as a way of maintaining investment levels in the private rented sector.
David Whittaker, CEO of Mortgages for Business, said: “With the changing face of the buy-to-let mortgage market, it is no surprise that lenders are keen to appeal to limited company borrowers.
“We have been recommending for some time that our clients seek professional tax advice to determine whether incorporation is the most suitable route for their circumstances, and these figures can only further encourage landlords to consider their position.”