New View Residential - letting agents in Cambridge

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Landlords selling up sooner

UK Landlords are selling up sooner according to research in Countrywide’s latest Lettings Index.

The survey says the time that UK landlords keep hold their investment properties fell from 20 years to 17 years between 2011 and 2015. This may be linked to the economic recovery which began to take hold in 2011.

UK landlords hold onto their investment properties for an average of three years longer than the owner-occupiers. The Countrywide survey says that UK landlords have consistently sold less often than homeowners in every year during the last decade.

In 2007, before the start of the recession, landlords were holding onto their investment properties for an average of 22 years – five years longer than today.

Jonny Morris of Countryside said: “Most landlords consider property to be a long-term investment. With landlords keeping their properties for an average of 17 years, there is more stability in the sector than is widely recognised.

“Long-term investment decisions drive many landlords and two thirds of rented properties are owned without buy-to-let finance. This means many landlords are in a position to ride out short-term market conditions in favour of expectations of future growth.

“As landlords trade less often than homeowners, the growth of the private rented sector weighs down on the number of housing transactions. Less liquidity in the sales market can cause local market distortions and impact labour mobility.

“As the private rented sector continues to grow, it is likely we will see more owners searching for flexibility, blurring the lines between tenant and landlord by letting their properties while renting elsewhere.”

The new survey shows the highest monthly rental increase was seen in Central London, where the average monthly rent on a new tenancy hit £2,583 in July. This represents a monthly increase of 6.8%.

The largest rental decrease was seen in Wales, where the average rent on a new tenancy fell by 2.3% to £685 a month.

The Countrywide Index analyses data on over 65,000 properties.

Victor Jameson of New View Residential, letting agents in Cambridge, commented: “Property investment has always been a long-term game for UK landlords. The costs involved in buying and selling property in the UK make short-term investment in the property market prohibitively expensive.

“I find it interesting that UK landlords are now selling their investment properties five years earlier than prior to the recession, and wonder at the reasons for this. It is not as if the banks or pension funds are offering a better return. Perhaps there is an element of consolidating portfolios or re-investing in different types of investment property.”

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