Policy changes could force landlords out and push rent prices up

by Gary Whittaker

Landlords operating in the UK's rental sector have faced a raft of policy changes over the last couple of years, with research showing that the rules being altered leaves operating in the market feel both confusing and costly for many. 

And according to a new survey, experts believe that these changes could spark an exodus from the market among landlords, with many choosing to sell up rather than soldier on. And this could be a problem for tenants, with a lack of available stock to rent only ever likely to push the cost of renting a home in the UK ever higher. 

In a survey by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), it was discovered that as many as two-thirds of surveyors believe that more landlords will exit the market than enter it over the course of the next 12 months, a situation that it calls "concerning". 

RICS' Paul Bagust said of the findings: "A functioning private rented sector is crucial to a healthy housing market."

The changes in the market over the last two years came as a result of worries from first-time buyers in the UK that they were being consistently outbid for properties by landlords who were looking to get themselves bigger portfolios. But the reality is that policy changes could make it even harder for people to save for their first home, with their rental spend likely to increase. 

According to RICS' survey, members believe that rental prices climbing is now a certainty over the coming years. They predict that over the course of the next five years, the average tenant will be paying between two and three per cent more for any home they rent. 

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13-September-17General Lettings News