Many buy-to-let landlords will undoubtedly commend former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith for slamming anti-buy-to-let legislation introduced by the former chancellor George Osborne for failing to support private landlords who he has described as “a significant provider of the additional housing we need”.
In a Conservative Home article, yesterday, he said it was time to “reconsider the way we treat private landlords who buy houses to rent”.
He pointed out that many buy-to-let landlords are now opting not to add to their property portfolios, deterred by the tax changes introduced by his own party, at a time when significantly more homes are needed in the private rented sector.
He wrote: “A large number of them [private landlords] are talking about no longer buying to let, and they blame it on George Osborne’s decision to impose a stamp duty levy on the purchase of homes to rent, to restrict mortgage interest relief to the basic rate of income tax, and to tax a landlord’s turnover rather than profits.
“This, they believe, has led to private landlords scaling back their operations or even leaving the sector altogether. We should all be concerned about this, because private landlords are a significant provider of the additional housing we need.”
Duncan Smith acknowledged the government’s plan to build 300,000 more homes a year, but pointed out that this level of housebuilding cannot be achieved overnight.
“We won’t be able to provide all the housing in the medium term through aggressive building programmes alone. We will need other sources of accommodation, as well,” he added.
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