TSB has introduced a new range of buy-to-let mortgages.
Available at up to 60% loan-to-value (LTV) there is a two-year fixed rate deal at 1.69%, along with a 75% LTV product at 1.94%.
In addition, there are two buy-to-let five-year fixed rates, starting from 1.99% up to 60% LTV and a 2.24% up to 75% LTV.
All of the products come with a £995 arrangement fee.
When it comes to investing in property, it pays to know about the latest property hotspots and up-and-coming areas whether you are buying-to-let or simply looking for capital growth.
Buying at the early stages of a long-term plan offers good potential for an increase in property values and solid rental returns. So where potentially are the best spots to invest for the long-term?
Research by Glide, broadband and utilities provider , has identified 10 areas where properties offer the potential for a regeneration price growth premium in addition to average values in the local area.
The company made a series of FOI requests to local councils in order to find the number of empty dwellings and commercial properties across the UK.
Collectively, across both categories of building, in the month of September 2019 there were 617,527 empty buildings across the UK.
Of those councils which held the information, Birmingham was revealed as the leading council area for the most potential space, with 8,086 residential properties and 7,622 commercial buildings in the city and its suburbs being empty.
Second is Liverpool, where 15,339 buildings are currently not occupied, while regions across the North dominate the top five, with Manchester, Leeds and Bradford also ranking highly.
|Empty residential properties||Empty commercial properties||Total|
|1||Birmingham City Council||8086||7622||15,708|
|2||Liverpool City Council||11073||4266||15,339|
|3||Manchester City Council||10531||4003||14,534|
|4||Leeds City Council||8331||4528||12,859|
|5||Bradford Metropolitan Council||2610||7908||10,518|
|6||Durham County Council||7330||1573||8,903|
|7||Bristol City Council||6403||1742||8,145|
|8||Cheshire West and Chester||5860||1897||7,757|
|9||Sheffield City Council||5063||2610||7,673|
Jason Lloyd, head of residential at Glide, said: “The research has revealed the high number of empty properties and businesses across the UK, particularly across some of the major northern Council areas.
“But whilst it is troubling to see so much wasted residential and commercial space, it does represent a clear opportunity for developers, and hopefully this study will help prospective investors pinpoint where there is the most potential for growth.”
Boris Johnson’s call for a snap general election on December 12 to try to settle the issue of Brexit took very few people by surprise. But many buy-to-let landlords and letting agents will be hoping that the poll will prove positive for the private rented sector, as it presents the main political parties with an opportunity to address voters’ concerns about housing, and not just focus on attempts to exit the EU.
Research shows that many landlords have been affected by the introduction of tougher tax treatments and tighter bank lending criteria, with many buy-to-let landlords actively selling and reducing their property holdings as a consequence.
The latest study by the Residential Landlords Association (RLA) shows that there has been a further increase in the number of landlords exiting the buy-to-let market in recent months, at a time when demand for private rented property is increasing.
According to the research, over the next 12 months 31% of landlords plan to sell at least one property with just 13% saying they plan to buy at least one.
A shortage of private rented housing together with strong demand from tenants has led to rising rents across most parts of Great Britain, and this is something that politicians must address.
Some parties will propose rent controls, but there is plenty of evidence to show that this could risk hurting tenants as well as landlords by further damping investment in the PRS and in some cases pushing up rents.
With successive governments failing to build enough housing – particularly social housing – the UK is in the grip of a worsening crisis, with homelessness on the rise.
So ahead of the general election, all political parties must make housing a primary political issue and set out clear strategies on how they would tackle the shortage of residential properties across the UK, including in the PRS.
Nick Leeming, chairman at Jackson-Stops, said: “All markets abhor uncertainty and the housing market is no exception. The priority now must be for politicians to provide reassurance by forming a Government, once elected, as quickly as possible.
“Regardless of how the government is formed, it is clear that each of the main political parties’ manifestos need to have housing as a priority and so a clear strategy must be put in place.”
With Britain edging closer to its first recession since the financial crisis, a leading property auctioneer is urging property investors, including buy-to-let landlords, to hold their nerve against the spectre of an economic downturn.
The country’s dominant service sector, which accounts for about 80% of the economy, unexpectedly plunged into contraction last month, in a sign of the increasing stress facing the economy as Brexit looms.
According to IHS Markit and the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (Cips), activity in the sector fell as companies reported a fall in sales, job losses, cancelled and postponed projects and weak investment levels.
There has been a recent rise in properties going into receivership, banks unwilling to lend for construction projects and a decline in tenants looking to rent business or residential properties, according to Mark Bailey, managing director of Landwood Group, who says that a rise in auction sales is also evident, largely down to an increase in repossessions.
He said: “Worryingly, at Landwood we are also receiving more instructions over the past few months than we have done for a year or more – instructions for properties that have sadly gone into receivership.
“It is harder for property owners to let business space and for domestic landlords to find tenants – there’s no doubt that a squeeze is on.
“With each failed building project, banks become more nervous to lend, builders stop building… and we fall headlong into a dreaded recession. Once we do, it’s anyone’s guess how deep it is or how long it lasts.
“The blame for all of this cannot be put at the door of Brexit… well, not entirely. There is no arguing with the fact that this is a period of change – domestically and globally. People err to the negative whenever there is change on the horizon – until events transpire and the scales balance out. The big issue is uncertainty and property is key to all of this. Uncertainty causes negativity, while a solid market has the opposite effect.”
So, if the pointers are all correct and a recession is upon us, what is the advice?
“Sit tight,” said Bailey. “Whether you are a commercial property owner or a domestic landlord, try your best to ride it out, perhaps for six months, before making any business decisions. Look at your borrowings and don’t over-stretch yourself at this time.
“There are always people who benefit from downturns in the market and they tend to be cash buyers. So if you have cash to invest long-term, a ripe time to buy may be about to begin.
“For the rest of us, it’s time to batten down the hatches and ride out the storm – see you on the other side.”
Principality Building Society has cut selected rates across a number of fixed buy-to-let and residential mortgage products.
The reductions include two-year buy-to-let rates at 70% and 75% loan-to-value up to £500,000, which have been cut by a maximum of 0.17%.
Both products include a free standard valuation, free legals and have no product or commitment fees.
Pablo Marchena, mortgage acquisition manager at Principality Building Society, commented: “We understand the financial pressures our customers are facing and we are continuing to support our broker partners by offering good value products to meet their clients’ requirements.”
Habito has added to its buy-to-let offering by launching its first suite of company buy-to-let mortgages. The products, available exclusively through Habito’s brokerage, are offered to landlords at up to 80% loan-to-value (LTV), with an introductory cashback offer of £250 available for a limited period.
Habito’s latest offering comes just two months after it entered the buy-to-let ending space with a range of Individual BTL products. The new mortgages offered by Habito provide landlords with a range of financing options designed to optimise their property investments, while delivering speed and certainty throughout the mortgage application process.
Products are available in fixed terms up to 10 years, with two-year fixed rate prices starting at 2.59% for a 60% LTV product and a 75% LTV price of 2.84%.
Daniel Hegarty, founder and CEO of Habito, which aims to deliver a 10-day ‘Time To Offer’ service, said: “In spite of uncertain political and economic times, financing a buy-to-let property through a limited company is proving to be a very appealing route for a growing number of landlords.
“Clearly competitive rates and value for money, operating costs and yields are the key drivers for property investments, but we’re seeing more and more demand for mortgage offers with speed, innovation and certainty – something we’re proud to be taking a lead on at Habito.”
Habito has also introduced new mortgage terms and conditions, designed to remove all jargon and meet the most rigorous readability measures. Hegarty added: “I’m beyond proud to be unveiling our brand new clear and simple mortgage T and Cs which speak to a personal ambition of mine to rid the mortgage world of jargon.
“Our mission has always been to set people free from the hell of mortgages and our research has proven a correlation between mortgage jargon and people paying over the odds each month on their mortgage.
“Jargon has a lot to answer for and we’re committed to rooting it out. We still have a long way to go but tackling the industry’s lengthiest, most complex and least customer-friendly document is a big step in the right direction.”
Landlords will welcome the news that buy-to-let mortgage costs are falling as lenders compete against each other to offer the cheapest deals. According to fresh figures from Mortgage Brain, there have been further rate and cost reductions on most mainstream buy-to-let products since the second quarter of 2019.
For example, the mortgage technology provider’s data shows that the cost of a two-year fixed buy-to-let purchase product at 60% loan-to-value (LTV) is now 1.9% lower than it was three months ago, which represents an annual saving of £144 on a £150,000 mortgage. Meanwhile, the cost of a 70% LTV three year fixed BTL mortgage has dropped by 1.1%, equating to an annual saving of £90 on a £150,000 mortgage compared to three months ago.
Many longer-term deals are also now cheaper, with five-year fixes at 80% LTV now 3.5% lower compared to 12 months ago, representing an annual saving of £324.
One factor driving down the costs of buy-to-let mortgages is the number of products now available on the market. The Mortgage Brain analysis revealed that there are now 3,859 buy-to-let products on the market from mainstream lenders, which represents an increase of 11% compared to a year ago. Mark Lofthouse, chief executive of Mortgage Brain, said: “Overall the message for the buy-to-let market is positive; especially for investors looking to fix for a longer term.
“The cost of buy-to-let mortgages continue to reach historic lows, with the market remaining competitive given the number of BTL mortgages currently on the market.
“Nevertheless, the market remains clouded by the ongoing political uncertainty, the looming Brexit deadline as well as the weakening economic forecast. The need therefore for specialist advice from a broker is more important than ever, so landlords are confident they are getting a mortgage that best suits their needs.”