April marks the start of the new tax year, bringing with it the next phase of reduced interest relief for buy-to-let mortgages. Meanwhile, as the calendar year moves swiftly along, there continues to be a range of changes which will affect our sector either having been recently introduced, or on their way.
Earlier this month the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards regulations went live, which require landlords to ensure their properties adhere to minimum energy efficiency ratings before new tenancies can be granted.
The Department of Housing, Communities and Local Government announced the introduction of a so-called ‘Rogue Landlord Database’ in a bid to expel landlords who fail to comply with regulation or who rent out substandard accommodation.
Finally, as we adapt to further tightening of the buy-to-let lending rules, the Bank of England is widely expected to raise interest rates in May.
Does this paint a picture of doom and gloom for the Private Rented Sector? Absolutely not.
Darlows has found many of our customers continue to enjoy a combination of portfolio growth, rental price growth and growth in the value of their properties – and for many landlords, these are the important factors.
Reduced tax relief and tightening legislation hasn’t deterred smart landlords from carefully strengthening their portfolio. The UK has an ongoing shortage in the provision of social and council owned homes, and the upfront cost of home ownership remains prohibitively high for many. This leads to private landlords being responsible for providing homes to over 20% of UK households – a number only set to grow over the coming years.