Seven in 10 landlords concerned about Government intervention in private rented sector in 2020, study reveals

Around seven in 10 landlords are uncertain how Government intervention will affect their residential property investment business in 2020, a new study has revealed.

The research, published by specialist lender Foundation Home Loans, surveyed almost 791 landlords in January 2020 on their views of anticipated private sector letting rules, such as the suggested introduction of minimum tenancy terms and rental caps.

According to the report, 73 per cent of landlords believe it is “quite or very likely” that minimum tenancy terms will come into effect over the next year. Under the plans, first announced in July 2018, tenants would have the right to ask for a minimum three-year tenancy term with a six-month break clause.

Likewise, 72 per cent of landlords believe individual licensing is inevitable, while 38 per cent see private rental caps likely in 2020. When asked about the latter, just 14 per cent of landlords say they are in favour of controlling rent fees, while 77 per cent disagreed with the measure. A further nine per cent were unsure.

Additionally, when asked about how the Government’s general election manifesto would affect landlords, a quarter (26 per cent) said it would affect them positively, 28 per cent said negatively, and 38 per cent had no opinion.

Commenting on the report, Jeff Knight, Director of Marketing at Foundation Home Loans, said: “While many landlords look like they’re taking a ‘wait and see’ approach to this Government and any anticipated intervention in the private rental sector and/or buy-to-let market, it’s also noticeable that many believe the status quo is unlikely to hold and there will be action of some kind.

“There is definitely a degree of uncertainty around what might be coming next, and I suspect many landlords are waiting for this month’s Budget before they make up their minds more fully on whether this is a Government which will be more ‘friendly’ to landlords.”

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