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Confidence returns to BTL market: Paragon

Despite a raft of regulatory changes, landlord confidence has remained steady in the first quarter of 2018, according to the latest research from Paragon.

Although the figure is still weak when compared to historical levels, this quarter’s figures contrast with the sharp dip in confidence that following the introduction of higher taxes for landlords in 2015.

Confidence also fell after tighter underwriting rules for buy-to-let mortgages were introduced last year.

The survey fund that landlords in the East of England were most positive about their future business prospects. Over half of those surveyed (53 per cent) said they felt upbeat about the prospects for their letting business in the next three months.

This sentiment is reflected by strong demand from tenants in the region. Eight out of 10 landlords in the area said demand from rental accommodation was either stable or increasing.

Similar levels of demand were recorded in the East and West Midlands, where 81 per cent and 76 per cent of landlords respectively reported stable or increasing tenant demand.

In contrast landlords in central London are least optimistic: only 26 per cent of those surveyed rated their prospects for their business as ‘good’ or ‘very good’ in the next three months.

Central London landlords were most likely to have reduced rent in the last 12 months, and the smaller number of landlords in this region (57 per cent) reported stable or increasing tenant demand.

Paragon’s managing director of mortgages John Heron says: “After an unprecedented level of change in the sector,  it’s encouraging to see landlords confidence stabilising this quarter.”

He added that the East and West Midland were also ranked among the top five regions in England and Wales for rental yield and capital gains.

He adds: “There is encouraging data on tenant demand, yield and capital gains in both the East of England and the Midlands, whlie the London market adjusts its footing after many years of strong growth.”

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