Economic Uncertainty More Concerning Than Brexit For Landlords

UK landlords are more concerned about tax and economic uncertainty than they are about Brexit, according to new research from Direct Line for Business.

New analysis has shown that short term issues are currently more prevalent risks for landlords. 41 per cent of those surveyed cited tax and economic outlook as their primary concern, whilst just 28 per cent felt that Brexit was a short term issue.

The survey also found that landlords are most positive about improving house prices, with 31 per cent citing this as an area of optimism. 29 per cent felt most positive about interest rates remaining low in the short term.

Another key concern for landlords was found to be growing regulation. 40 per cent of those questioned were nervous about the growing risk of prosecution and the potential for higher penalties. One issue that was flagged was the worry of being prosecuted under the Immigration Act through the Government’s controversial Right to Rent scheme. A landlord’s failure to carry out the appropriate checks could lead to them facing criminal prosecution with an unlimited fine and up to five years in prison.

40 per cent of landlords are also concerned about inflationary pressures, fearing that they will reduce the value of their income and increase their costs.

In contrast, the UK leaving the European Union doesn’t rank in the top 10 short term concerns for landlords. This therefore suggests that they don’t think it will have an immediate impact on the property market. 28 per cent instead believe Brexit could bring positive benefits for landlords.

Business manager at Direct Line for Business, Christina Dimitrov, said: ‘It’s great to see landlord’s being resilient towards the ever changing property marketplace and it’s really positive to hear they don’t appear to be worried about Brexit and the impact on demand. The continued low interest rate environment can only benefit landlords and tenants. However, experts are predicting an interest rate rise in the future and the Prudential Regulation Authority’s tougher underwriting rules for buy to let mortgage lenders may bring some challenges for landlords wanting to expand their portfolios.’

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