Lease tenant rental

Thinking of becoming a landlord? So are 4.8 million other Brits

A surprising number of people in the UK have considered embarking on property investment in 2018, and it turns out most landlords don’t give up their day job.

Despite recent concerns that the buy-to-let sector is less desirable for some investors now than it once was, around one in 10 UK adults, which equates to about 4.8 million people, have considered taking out a buy-to-let (BTL) mortgage this year, according to statistics from Sainsbury’s Bank Mortgages.

The figures show that the number of people becoming “accidental landlords“, sometimes through inheriting a property or a sum of money large enough to invest in a property, is also high, with 25% citing this change in circumstance as their main reason for considering a BTL mortgage.

A further 35% said that a change in income was the main reason behind them looking into becoming landlords, while 29% believed there were good opportunities in the market. Sainsbury’s Bank has recently increased its mortgage range with new products for the buy-to-let market, including new purchases as well as remortgaging.

David Buxton, head of banking at Sainsbury’s Bank, said: “With demand for rental properties showing no signs of slowing down, we’re delighted to be able to help landlords by offering competitive mortgages and advice to help them best manage their investments.”

Property investment to supplement your income

Meanwhile, research from MakeUrMove looking into the profiles of today’s average UK landlord has revealed that two-thirds use buy-to-let as a way of supplementing their earnings, rather than as their sole income. Of the buy-to-let investors surveyed, only 5% were full-time landlords with five or more properties.

The figures also showed a rise in the number of accidental landlords, backing up Sainsbury’s research, with 16% of those who had become landlords unintentionally saying that they rented out property they’d inherited, while 22% had become landlords due to circumstances such as relocating but deciding to keep their existing home, or being unable to sell a property.

According to Alexandra Morris, managing director of MakeUrMove, the research shows that most landlords are “ordinary people working in normal jobs” rather than wealthy property tycoons.

“[Landlords] work as electricians, taxi drivers, hairdressers or social workers – they are just normal people who want to maintain healthy, stress-free relationships with their tenants.”

She added: “Many of these landlords start on a consent to let mortgages and later become buy-to-let mortgage holders. Having a mortgage on the property means they are forced to pass on the costs to their tenants.”

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