Shocking rise in numbers of landlords desperate to sell

Posted on Friday, July 14, 2023

A sales agency specialising in disposing of buy to let portfolios says it’s now received an averaged 240 enquires a month from landlords wanting to quit.

And the highest percentage of enquiries are currently from landlords with portfolios of 20 properties or more.

The Landlord Sales Agency says that despite a significant increase in landlords looking to sell BTLs, 75 per cent of its agreed sales over the last 12 months have been to other landlords who are keeping existing tenants.

One landlord - who recently sold her portfolio of 23 properties in Warrington - is quoted by the agency as saying that aside from looking to retire she no longer wanted the stress of managing the properties. Even though she had a portfolio value of £2.7m, rising costs and interest rates meant she was subsidising others to live in her properties.

The agency’s managing director, David Coughlin, says his work now involves liaising with large portfolio and corporate landlords, as well as tenants and in some cases local authorities, to keep as many tenants in homes as possible.

He says: “We have a market right now which is not serving landlords, tenants or homeowners. No-one wins. Rising interest rates, higher bills and tighter regulation are making it impossible for some landlords to remain in the market as their retirement plans no longer stack up financially. 

“I have one landlord with 50 houses which he is unable to refinance as no lenders will lend, and another with 40 properties and a £6,000 per month mortgage deficit - the only option is to sell. That’s just two examples, and on average more than 200 tenants who could stand to lose their home.”

He claims the current circumstances have been so challenging that in order to maintain tenancies during sales, his firm has exceptionally helped tenants pay their current rents, paid off arrears, paid for tenants to relocate and in some cases, even paid tenants’ rent in advance for the next landlord who takes on the property. 

“We’re trying to help both landlords and tenants navigate their way through this extremely challenging time. Tenants are having to accept rent rises, and in 50 per cent of the sales we have agreed, the tenants have opted to stay with a higher rent because they know fierce competition for rental properties could see them paying even more elsewhere” adds Coughlin.

Via @LettingAgentToday