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UK landlords are still experiencing high levels of demand during the third quarter of the year with just 3% reporting that it is declining, the latest monthly buy to let survey shows. Overall 41% of landlords surveyed said tenant demand was growing or booming and 51% said in their view demand was stable, according to the Private Rented Sector Trends survey from specialist lender Paragon Mortgages. The survey, which has been running for the past 13 years and tracks landlord confidence and their views on the wider buy to let market, also shows rental arrears are expected to remain stable. Looking ahead, 61% of landlords felt that the level of tenant arrears would remain stable over the next 12 months. In comparison 12% of landlords stated that in their view tenant arrears would increase and 8% expect a decrease. Landlords were also asked what the most important factor is when they are looking for new buy to let mortgage finance. Interest rates remained the most important, having been top of the list for the past 12 months, followed by average loan to value and product fee. ‘Our latest survey of landlords reveals that that the past quarter has been a stable and steady one, with just over a third of landlords saying they feel more optimistic about the prospects for their rental portfolios,’ said John Heron, the firm’s director of mortgages. At this point in the year, we can usually gauge how the wider buy to let market has performed and what likely lending volumes for the calendar year will be,’ he explained. He pointed out that last year, the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) reported total buy to let lending for 2013 as £20.7 billion. ‘Current thinking is that gross buy to let lending this year will be around the £25 billion mark, which represents a healthy increase over 2013 but there has been some evidence that the rate of growth has slowed as the year has progressed,’ added Heron. Continue reading →
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