Contact Us

0121 770 5666

The Government's War on Buy-To-Let. Who's really paying?

Mon 05 Jun 2017

The bill for the government’s misguided war on buy-to-let is coming due.


Image result for rics


The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said yesterday that rents are likely to rise by 25 per cent over the next five years, outpacing house price growth, as landlords cover their increased taxation and tenants are left to fight over a diminishing supply of rental properties.

This can’t even be deemed an unintended consequence of government policy. George Osborne’s introduction of a higher rate of stamp duty for the purchase of additional properties and the sharp planned reduction in mortgage interest tax relief (which will make many buy-to-let properties unprofitable) can only have been designed to push landlords from the market.



Buy-to-lose: Is there value left in the UK letting market?


Perhaps a few first-time buyers have been helped at the margin, no longer competing with landlords in some areas. But for the countless others who either can’t afford to buy their own home, who prefer the flexibility of renting, or who simply haven’t decided where they want to settle down, this assault on buy-to-let looks like a disaster.


Private sector landlords have long been a political bogeyman, perceived as unfairly monopolising our constrained housing stock. This lays the blame at the wrong door. Housing has become unaffordable because of restrictions on the supply of new homes, not because some people have decided to invest in property, whether to top up their income or to complement their pension.


The system won’t help renters by wrapping buy-to-let landlords in red tape


In fact, there can be no solution to the housing crisis without the enthusiastic involvement of individual landlords, who provide homes for millions across Britain.



The government has made welcome moves to support the institutional rental sector, large investors who construct purpose-built properties that provide stable returns and attractive homes for tenants. The likes of Legal & General have made great strides in getting this off the ground, but it is currently a minor segment of the total housing mix and cannot yet take up the slack if ordinary landlords leave the market in a big way.


Loading landlords with extra taxation and more bureaucracy is not a free lunch – someone has to pay, and as RICS has found it to be tenants. So while it’s welcome that this week’s Housing White Paper opted against dangerous new measures like rent controls, the government mustn’t ignore the damage its existing policies are inflicting on Britain’s landlords and renters.


You can keep up to date with changes on our Facebook, Twitter and Youtube pages as well as our website.

"Just wanted to say a huge ' thank you' from me. The photos are amazing and don't in any way portray the acres of boxes and chaos that was in every room here yesterday! Dawn was absolutely lovely, helped in every way, even moving stuff everywhere!! Her photographs are amazing, she is so talented.I feel so reassured that your team are looking after my home. Thank you so far for everything."
N.S. July 2016