Half of landlords finding buy-to-let mortgage access 'difficult'

by Sarah Ashcroft

Many British landlords are admitting they are finding it difficult to access buy-to-let mortgages in order to increase their rental property portfolios.

A survey by the Residential Landlords Association (RLA) revealed almost half of these professionals claim it was a struggle or impossible for them to obtain such a product.

In tighter market conditions, property investors may find their success in securing these sorts of loans improves, however, if they follow the best advice.

Taking such avenues may help increase the number of landlords who are successful in their attempts to secure buy-to-let mortgages.

The RLA - which represents more than 12,500 landlords - revealed that 21.3 per cent of its members admitted they were "unable to obtain" such a product, while an additional 24.1 per cent claim to have found the process of getting this type of loan "very difficult".

As such, this information has come as the government seeks to drive support for the private rented sector following the publication of the Montague Report, but this latest survey shows that the biggest challenge facing the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition will be to unlock the financial support needed from banks to support the landlords that make up a huge proportion of the sector.

Higher rents in the property sector owing to a shortfall in supply is causing mounting concern, while the reluctance of the financial sector to lend is seriously obstructing growth within the market.

Therefore, it is more difficult for supply to meet the housing needs of young people and families especially, particularly because many are finding it too expensive to consider buying over renting.

Alan Ward, chairman of the RLA, said he and his colleagues are pleased the government has renewed its commitment to the growth of the private rented sector, as it has a vital role to play in meeting growing demand, which will not happen without fiscal support from the banks.

"The RLA is confident that landlords are ready and willing to invest. A hundred thousand homes per year is a strong marketing opportunity and it's time that the banks recognised that and started lending again," he concluded.

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Published on: September 12, 2012

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