Outlook For Buy-to-let Remains Positive Despite Double Whammy


Blog by Scanlans chairman Ian Stanistreet

Buy-to-let investors have been hit with a double whammy and it has led to a misplaced feeling of doom and gloom in some quarters about the outlook for the market.

Stamp duty has increased for people buying a second home, including buy-to-let properties, and since April this year the government has cut mortgage interest tax relief. 

These measures mean it now costs more to buy a buy-to-let property and more of a landlord’s rental income is going to the taxman.

The squeeze on buy-to-let investors has triggered concerns about the buy-to-let market but frankly I don’t see it having a lasting impact in areas such as the north west, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire.

While the squeeze may have taken the icing off the cake, the cake is still intact and, as long as there is tenant demand, it is still worthwhile being active in the buy-to-let investment market.

Buying the right property in a well-managed block in the right area will continue to bring good returns. Historically, there has been good capital growth over the long term and this remains true.

The north west buy-to-let market remains buoyant – lots of residential developments are springing up in and around places such as Manchester city centre and further afield.

Millions of pounds are being invested in creating buy-to-let homes rather than those aimed at owner-occupiers, from the conversion of old mills to new-build schemes.

Tenant demand is here to stay and that is key. People want to live in cities such as Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds and an increasing number want to rent rather than buy. This isn’t always because they are unable to afford a deposit. Many prefer the flexibility offered by renting, especially in city centres.

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