A noteworthy number of buy to let landlords in Britain plan to buy more properties over the next year notwithstanding the frustrations, challenges and seismic changes in the private rented sector. According to Aldermore, the specialist Buy To Let lender, their research shows around 41% of portfolio buy to let landlord’s objective is to grow their buy to let portfolio (Portfolio landlords are landlords that own more than one property).
So, I thought, “Are Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard landlords feeling the same?” If so, if these numbers were applied to the Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard private rental market, what sort effect would it have on the Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard property market as whole?
Talking to the landlords I deal with, most are feeling quite optimistic about the future of the Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard rental market and the prospect it presents notwithstanding the doom and gloom prophecies that the property market will shrink. Many of those Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard landlords who are looking to enlarge their portfolio are doing so because they still see the Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard rental market as a decent investment opportunity.
With top of the range Bank and Building Society Savings Accounts only reaching 1.5% a year, the rollercoaster ride of Crypto currency and the yo-yoing of the Stock Market, the simple fact is, with rental yields in Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard far outstripping current savings rates, the short term prospect of a minor drop in property prices isn’t putting off Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard landlords.
The art to buying a Dunstable & Leighton Buzzard buy to let investment is to buy the profit on the purchase price, not the anticipation of the future sale price.
No matter what the historical economy has thrown at us, with the global meltdown in 2008/9, dotcom crash of 2000, ERM in 1992, the three day week, oil crisis and hyperinflation in the 1970’s (the list goes on) ... the housing market has always bounced back stronger in the long term. That’s the point ... long term. Investing in buy to let is a long-term strategy. The simple fact is, over the long term with the increasing demand for rental properties, predominantly among Millennials as many cannot afford to get on the property ladder, and with councils not building enough properties of any kind, many youngsters are having to resort the private rental market for their accommodation needs.
So, what if I look at the numbers involved in Leighton Buzzard?
There are 367 landlords that own just one buy to let (BTL) property in Leighton Buzzard and 798 Leighton Buzzard landlords, who are portfolio landlords. Between those 798 Leighton Buzzard portfolio BTL landlords, they own a total of 1,675 Leighton Buzzard BTL properties and they can be split down into the size of landlord portfolio in the graph below….
If I apply the Aldermore figures that means 327 Leighton Buzzard landlords have plans to expand their BTL portfolio in the coming year or so.
However, the Aldermore Research also showed that 8% of private landlords intended to reduce the number of properties they own. They put this down to continuing Government intervention in the housing market (as many landlords mentioned too many limitations and higher taxation) while some believed that tenants are excessively protected to the disadvantage of the landlord.
I would say there is no repudiating that the buy to let market has taken a bit of a beating, thanks to a plethora of Government regulation, new mortgage underwriting rules in 2014 and George Osborne’s tax changes. Yet there still remains an overall consciousness of optimism among the vast majority of Leighton Buzzard buy to let landlords. Despite these latest changes, many landlords still view buy to let as a good investment, as long as you buy right and expand your portfolio taking into account the second rule of buy to let … assess your position on the ‘buy to let seesaw’ of capital growth and yield.
Daniel Bourke is the owner of Belvoir Lettings Dunstable and in his previous career in Architecture he was an Associate in a leading London Architectural practice