A record 65 per cent of landlord purchases over the last 12 months were made by cash buyers according to Countrywide.
In the past year this accounted for £21.0 billion in cash sales.
“Landlords have increased their housing wealth considerably over the last 10 years. This means cash purchases are steadily becoming a bigger part of the market" explains Johnny Morris, Countrywide's research director.
"But a landlord buying with cash will often have a mortgage either on their personal home or other properties in their portfolio. Rising prices have allowed landlords to take equity out of both their personal or other rental homes to expand their portfolios" he adds.
The proportion of landlords buying in cash has steadily increased over recent years.
Over the last 12 months 65 per cent of all homes bought by a landlord were paid for in cash, surpassing the previous high of 60 per cent set in 2011. This is the highest figure since Countrywide’s records began in 2007, a year when 60 per cent of buy-to-let purchases were paid for with a mortgage.
Landlords buying in Northern England and Scotland are most likely to buy in cash.
Some 78 per cent of privately rented homes bought in the North East over the last 12 months were paid for in cash, with cash landlords spending £3.17 for every £1 spent by a landlord using a mortgage.
Landlords buying in London are the most likely to use a mortgage. London is the only region where mortgaged landlords outspent their cash backed counterparts - £1 for every 67p.