Landlord News

RLA suggests pro-growth measures to avoid looming rented housing supply crisis

Em Morley - October 25, 2019

A rented housing supply crisis could be on the horizon, as a new survey shows more landlords are selling properties than buying, whilst demand continues to increase.

According to the Residential Landlords Association (RLA)’s survey of over 2,700 landlords, almost 25% have seen demand for private rented property increase over the last three months. Only 15% said that demand had fallen.

However, 41% have said they haven’t noticed a change.

According to this research, over the next 12 months, we will see 31% of landlords sell at least one property. Only 13% said they plan to buy at least one.

These figures have also been supported by statistics from other organisations:

  • Rightmove’s data shows a shortage in private rented housing together with a strong demand from tenants has led to record asking rents across most of Great Britain.
  • The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has warned of an acceleration in rent increases over the next five years as a result of this demand for housing outstripping supply.

A programme has been designed by the Government over recent years to cut investment in private rented housing through various tax increases. It hopes to encourage more houses to be available for purchase by owner-occupiers.

The latest figures, however, show that this strategy was a failure. The RLA is now calling on the Government to adopt pro-growth measures. It suggests scrapping the Stamp Duty levy on the purchase of additional properties where landlords add to the net overall supply of homes available, including bringing long-term empty homes into use.

David Smith, Policy Director for the RLA, said: “Those who argue that a smaller private rented sector is good for tenants wanting to buy a home are plain wrong. The Government’s policies are choking off the supply of homes to rent whilst demand remains strong. This is only making life more difficult and potentially more expensive for those looking for somewhere to live.”

“Without an urgent change of course and the introduction of pro-growth policies the situation will only become worse.”