Buy to let is still booming despite more homes up for sale and more buyers returning to the market.
The number of properties listed as ‘to let’ was up 11.4% in the second quarter of 201, compared with 12 months earlier – and growing at five times the rate of sales in the same period.
Flats were the most popular buy to let property available to rent. Almost half the rental market were flats (47%), and 40% of those were in London.
In fact, says Experian, the research company compiling the report, three-quarters of London buy to let properties are flats.
Nationwide, the terraced houses were most popular – rising in number by more than 16% in the quarter.
The research also looked at homes for sale and found that most were not affordable homes for first time buyers but detached houses.
The number of properties valued at less than £250,000 fell by 0.4%, while those between £250,000 and £500,000 increased by 4% and those valued at more than £500,000 surged by 14%.
The largest fall in the number of affordable properties was in the North-West, where the number of properties priced under £100,000 dropped by 10% and those between £100,000 and £250,000 slipped back 8.3%.
The region saw less properties for sale (-6.8%) but more properties come to the market as buy to let (7.8%).
Jonathan Westley, at Experian UK & Ireland, said: “Some lenders and estate agents are reporting improvement in the housing market, with the Council of Mortgage Lenders data showing confidence and activity growing strongly at the bottom of the property ladder. Our latest figures do, however, show that this trend is not being seen across the whole of the UK.
“In some regions, the housing market remains challenging for first time buyers, particularly in London, which is constraining activity levels for lower value properties and keeping a lid on prices in many areas. This is reflected in the surge in rental properties on the market.
“This insight into the changing face of the UK’s property market is essential for any financial services, utility or insurance company in order to truly understand the impact on credit strategies.”