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Landlords warn they could exit the market

A quarter (27%) of landlords have warned that they may not be a landlord by 2021, with some feeling under pressure.

A study from Just Landlords found that almost a third (31%) of landlords say they have more worries than they did 12 months ago, with 28% claiming that owning a rental property is “very stressful”.

Emily Morley from Just Landlords said: “The checklist for a landlord can seem endless, with so many areas to consider. There’s property maintenance to uphold, knowing your rights as a landlord, and what you are required by law to provide for tenants.

“It can feel like a never-ending task to stay on top of changes in the industry, so we’re not surprised to learn from our survey that so many are finding being a landlord stressful.

“One way to reduce this stress is to use an accredited letting agent to manage your property.”

Most expect Brexit to negatively affect the market.

A quarter (23%) of landlords believe it will become harder to find new tenants, while a similar proportion (25%) think rental properties will be harder to come by.

Last year saw a number of legal changes, including the Tenant Fees Act 2019, which banned the use of tenancy fees for the things like inventories.

Almost a quarter (24%) of those surveyed believe this change will have the greatest impact in 2020.

From April this year mortgage interest payments will no longer be tax deductible, which is another notable change.

Morley added: “Investing in and letting a property has never been a straightforward process, but we’re seeing an increasing amount of additions and changes to legislation.

“It’s great that the government is acknowledging issues within the private rental sector and making attempts to improve housing for tenants, but there needs to be a balance that allows landlords to remain confident in the market.

“2019 was full of surprises, both good and bad, and with Brexit decisions still ongoing, we expect the boat to continue rocking for a while longer. As with any introduction of new legislation, it can take time to acclimatise to change.

“Landlords must try to look to the future and have faith that the market will not only stabilise but strengthen.

“There are measures that can be taken, to ensure you have a cushion to fall back on during financial difficulties, such as taking out a comprehensive landlord insurance policy. Having such a plan in place can provide peace of mind for those feeling unsure about the future.”