Data shows that at the end of last year, 82% of landlords claimed that they had no plans to acquire another property in 2020, with just 3% intending to add more than a single property to their portfolio.
However, according to the latest research from Simply Business, the government's stamp duty holiday appears to be driving more landlords towards larger portfolios.
The newly released research reveals that soon after the stamp duty holiday was implemented, a 10% of landlords said they are now planning to purchase more properties and build out their portfolio, and just 5% said they had any intention to sell any existing properties.
Simply Business says this rise in confidence could lead to a spike in investments away from the city, including in the countryside and coastal towns. At the end of last year, a third (29%) of UK residential landlords already believed properties in city centres no longer represented a worthwhile investment. Now with more landlords intending to purchase, we could see this come to fruition, with a spike in investments outside of the cities.
Lockdown may have also pushed up renter and homeowner demand in greener towns and villages, with recent figures from Rightmove also revealing that property searches have doubled for homes in small towns and villages with populations less than 11,000.
Alan Thomas, UK CEO at Simply Business, had this to say: “The coronavirus outbreak and consequent lockdowns have been transformational in UK renters’ attitudes towards property, and therefore where landlords are looking to make their next investment.
“The pandemic has resulted in people spending more time at home – both for work and leisure, while many of the benefits of city living have been impacted. It’s no surprise to see that renters are valuing larger properties with outdoor space.
“There appears to be a shift in terms of what is considered a desirable property by tenants, and residential landlords – crucial to both the economy and the local communities where they provide housing – along with the market in general, are reacting to this.
“What is clear though, is that the UK buy-to-let market is going through somewhat of a transition, driven by a move away from the previous demand for city centre properties.”