The head of a firm that seeks investors to put money into residential property funds rather than individual homes for tenants has made a startling attack on what he regards as the inadequacies of some buy to let landlords.
Simon Heawood, chief executive of Bricklane, has written an article for London business publication City AM stating: “the amateur buy-to-let market has shown itself incapable of providing a service to tenants that is fit for purpose.”
The article begins by suggesting that the Fees Ban on lettings agents coming into effect this coming weekend is good news for landlords as well as tenants, and represents a bid to professionalise the private rental sector.
He also backs the increasing trend towards three year tenancies.
Heawood praises those landlords already moving towards longer tenancies but then says: “What of landlords who aren’t willing to adjust?”
He says many landlords are attacking the longer tenancies trend as another obstacle for buy to let, following tax and regulation changes. Heawood then says: ”Even landlords providing a good service to their tenants hold these views.”
He goes on to write: “The unfortunate reality is that the amateur buy-to-let market has shown itself incapable of providing a service to tenants that is fit for purpose.
“Many landlords will find that the increased effort, with decreased pay-off due to tax changes, means that it’s time to exit the market. Their places will be filled by those prepared to do the work to fit in with the new normal in the rental market.
“What we all gain in return is a rental market that provides security and stability for those who rent, in professionally managed homes. This would be a transformation from the situation today, but one that is looking increasingly inevitable.”