With landlords’ purse strings being tightened by tax changes and a mortgage squeeze, a growing number of buy-to-let investors are choosing to ditch letting agents to find or manage properties, and are instead going it alone, new research shows.
A new survey of 2,000 landlords nationwide suggests that almost 600,000 landlords, or 64% of those polled, would consider using private websites to find a tenant in order to avoid paying what can sometimes prove to be costly letting agent fees.
Some 37% of landlords questioned said that they do not feel that the UK rental market is fit for purpose, with this tally rising to 50% in London, which is unsurprising given that almost a quarter - 23% - of respondents claim to have lost hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds through void periods because instructed letting agents had failed to secure them new tenants.
“Today’s research presents a number of concerning insights into the difficulties faced by the Britain’s vital landlord community. It is obvious that landlords up and down the country feel let down by the current property letting system,” said Fareed Nabir, founder and CEO of LetBritain, which commissioned the research.
Previous LetBritain research found that two fifths (40%) of UK renters – 7.21 million people – find the marketplace to be “ruthless and unethical”, with agents allowing gazumping and non-existent “phantom properties” to become far too commonplace across the rental market.
“Clearly a faster, more affordable and transparent system is required to support the market of 2017 for both landlords and tenants,” Nabir added.