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Landlords - buy at discount now or wait for bigger price falls?

There’s a dilemma for landlords wishing to expand their portfolios - do so now, just as some buyers are offering discounts? Or wait longer in the hope of bigger price falls?

Land Registry data has shown that house prices hit a brick wall in September, with the monthly rate of growth stalling. At the same time, the level of buyers entering the market is dropping with mortgage approvals falling 3.8 per cent in the last six months and 7.3 per cent annually.

However, the latest market analysis by House Buyer Bureau has revealed that the number of homes reaching the market for sale across Britain has actually increased, up 16 per cent versus six months ago. 


It claims that this suggests that sellers hope to secure buyers before the current market decline worsens and the value of their home drops. 

At a regional level, it’s the East of England that has seen the largest uplift in surplus for sale stock, with 23 per cent more homes entering the market for sale now versus six months ago. The North West and Wales have also seen a notable increase at 21 per cent, followed by the East and West Midlands at 18 and 16 per cent respectively. 

For landlords in particular, the story is at city level. There are 113 per cent more homes being listed for sale across Leeds versus the level seen back in July of this year, with Liverpool (31 per cent), Nottingham (27 per cent), Leicester (26 per cent) and Manchester (23 per cent) also seeing some of the largest uplifts in homes heading to market. 

Managing director of House Buyer Bureau, Chris Hodgkinson, comments: “We’ve seen numerous indicators that the market is running low on steam but this is yet to deter the nation’s home sellers, who have continued to flood the market to an even greater extent than six months ago when the pandemic property market boom was still in full swing. 

“Many are doing so in hopes of securing a buyer before the current cool in the rate of house price growth materialises into an actual decline. However, we’ve already seen the level of buyers entering the market start to dwindle as a result of increasing mortgage costs and so they may well find it tougher than expected to secure an offer on their home.

“So not only are we seeing more homes listed for sale, but there’s also less buyers looking to purchase and when you consider these two factors together, the likelihood is that this surplus for sale stock will actually help accelerate a drop in house prices.”

For those landlords risking a longer wait before purchasing, the most pessimistic forecasts for the housing market predict falls of five to 15 per cent across 2023.

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    As yet we don't know the full details of Gove's white paper or EPC 'C' or even if that's going to become EPC 'B' so it's more likely that portfolios will be reducing rather than expanding at least in the short term, then of course there's that labour government in 2 yrs time !


    You've made all the key points, Andrew.

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    Landlords more likely to be selling, but we don't want to flood the market with an excess of similar properties. I met with my estate agent last week (yes found one who is willing to have a sensible conversation) and those of us with ex council houses in reasonable areas can expect to sell to the usual first time buyers but also people who need to move to a property of same sort of size but free up some cash / reduce mortgage. Lots of 2/3 bed new builds etc have been selling for silly money round here.

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    Until the mortgage market has stabilized it's too risky to buy any more. Fixed rates are incredibly high and trackers or discounts may look OK at current rates but who knows what the base rate will be over the next couple of years?


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