Hundreds of buy-to-let landlords have expressed concerns for the future of the buy-to-let industry if Labour comes into power.
Boris Johnson is attempting to trigger an October general election, but the majority of landlords in the UK’s private rented sector are unlikely to vote for Jeremy Corbyn’s party if the poll does go ahead next month, according to new research.
A survey from Landlord Today found that 93% of landlords consider the existing Labour party unfit to govern, owed in part to its housing policy, especially when it comes to the PRS.
Last week, the shadow chancellor John McDonnell said he wanted to see the introduction of a ‘right to buy’ scheme for private tenants as well as higher taxes on landlords.
In response, 91% of landlords surveyed said that they think Labour’s private tenants ‘right to buy’ policy would ‘destroy’ the PRS.
Earlier this year, a Labour-commissioned report called on the party to intervene to cool the housing market if it wins power by introducing a new “progressive property tax” set nationally instead of by local councils and paid for by landlords instead.
As part of Labour’s proposed major property laws shake-up, empty homes, second homes and those owned by people not resident in the UK for tax purposes would have to pay the new tax at a “significantly” higher rate.
The idea behind the proposed shake-up of the property tax system is to “discourage the use of homes as financial assets, reduce the tax paid by the majority of households, and encourage more efficient use of the housing stock”.
The report states: “We recommend that a Labour government replace the regressive and unpopular council tax with a progressive property tax based on contemporary property values.
“Unlike council tax, this tax would be payable by owners, not tenants.
“This would result in significant administrative savings, lower levels of arrears and less court action.
“Unlike council tax, the progressive property tax rate would be based on regularly updated property values, and the rates would be set nationally, rather than locally determined.”
Some MPs have branded the proposal “extraordinary and deeply damaging” and warned that Labour’s move amounted to a “tax bombshell”, and most landlords share their sentiments.
Some 218 landlords - 94% of respondents to a separate Landlord Today poll - said that they disagreed with the radical plans being considered by the Labour Party.