Buy-to-let investors could sell off as many as 500,000 over the next 12 months because of tax reforms, the National Landlords Association has said.
Because of changes introduced by the chancellor in the Summer Budget and Autumn Statement, the association stated there would then be a further 100,000 properties sold off in each subsequent year until 2021.
In November George Osborne announced there would be a 3 per cent premium on stamp duty for buy-to-let investors and those buying second homes from this April.
He had previously announced, in his Summer Budget, a restriction on mortgage interest relief on residential property to the basic rate of income tax from April 2017.
Richard Lambert, chief executive of the National Landlords Association, said: “Two speeches from the chancellor in 2015 have led to a crisis in confidence greater than when all but a few buy-to-let products were immediately withdrawn from the market following the 2007 financial crash.
“Up to half a million properties could come onto the market as a result of the Summer Budget and Autumn Statement, which the chancellor will no doubt deem a success.
“But there is no guarantee that these will be the one or two-bedroom flats or small houses that will appeal to first time buyers, especially as landlords are more likely to offload less desirable stock in less desirable areas.
“What happens to the people these landlords house if they still can’t buy and there are fewer and fewer properties available to rent?”
The figures come from the NLA’s Quarterly Landlord Panel survey, which was carried out at the end of last year and questioned 1,364 people.
The survey found confidence in landlords’ business expectations has tumbled by more than a third over the past year – down from 67 per cent to an all-time low of 43 per cent.
At the end of last month the Council of Mortgage Lenders warned HM Treasury of the risk of “overkill” in its attitudes towards the buy-to-let sector.
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