Landlords are feeling gloomy about the future, with those selling up blaming economic pressures, the Renters Reform Bill and upcoming EPC rules.
Goodlord’s annual State of the Lettings Industry report reveals that nearly 60% of landlords are pessimistic, while 19% are ambivalent, compared with 47% of letting agents and 46% of tenants.
Over the last 12 months, 47% of landlords have either tried to offload a property or are considering doing so. Of the 30% of landlords who did sell, 40% sold one property, 33% sold two, and 3% sold more than five – and 10% of landlords turned one of their properties into a short-term let.
Goodlord’s poll of 1,168 private tenants and 861 property professionals found that 80% of letting agents expected more landlords to leave the sector in the next 12 months with 36% saying it would be a “significant amount”.
Almost half of all letting agents and landlords believe the introduction of new rolling contracts in the Renters Reform Bill will have a negative impact, while 17% of letting agents and 30% of landlords feel pessimistic about the property portal. Landlords have the strongest negative views about the introduction of the ombudsman, with 43% believing it will negatively impact the sector. Conversely, 42% of letting agents think otherwise.
Sean Hooker, head of redress at the Property Redress Scheme, tells LandlordZONE that the government needs to use expertise in the sector to deliver the changes needed quickly and efficiently.
“The figures reflect the uncertainty surrounding the proposed legislation,” he adds. “I am not surprised that agents’ and landlords’ views differ as most agents have easier access to help and support through their professional network, so they can understand and adapt to the changes. A lot more help is needed to ensure landlords are prepared.”