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Prominent buy to let lender still bullish despite attacks on sector

Paragon Mortgages’ parent firm, the Paragon Group of Companies, remains bullish about the buy to let sector despite the series of attacks from tax and duty changes. 

In its trading report to the City, the group posted a 6.7 per cent rise in full year pre-tax earnings, as it won higher-margin business despite volatility caused by the stamp duty surcharge and the Brexit vote. 

It reported that new buy to let borrowing and investments fell 12.4 per cent in the year to October while its pipeline was down 55 per cent.

“This was very much a year of two halves for buy-to-let with very strong completion levels being seen in the run up to the stamp duty increase in April followed by a commensurate reduction in activity levels across the market from April” admits John Heron, director of Paragon Mortgages. 

But he insists the pipeline - although sharply reduced - is now gathering momentum with an increase approaching 20 per cent in October alone. 

“In particular we are seeing an improvement in the professional landlord segment of the market, a sector we are well positioned to satisfy given our extensive experience of meeting their individual requirements” he says.

“With strong rental demand, there will continue to be a growing need for professional landlords to provide quality, private rental accommodation” he says.

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