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Graham Awards


Shocking rise in numbers of landlords desperate to sell

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.

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    • A W
    • 14 July 2023 10:00 AM

    Not really that shocking, we've been warning about this for a couple of years now... ever since the Government started demonising landlords and introducing regulations/legislations left right and centre.

    With everyone selling up = less supply = higher demand = higher rents.

    Good job Shelter & Generation Rent.

  • Barry X

    Exactly as @A M says its *not* "shocking" at all but exactly as expected and a natural reaction to the way we landlords have been and are being treated....

    I believe the *only* two things currently saving the Private Rental Sector from rapid and catastrophic collapse are:

    (1) CGT (capital gains tax) making landlords hesitate about selling because it's such a horrible trap and dishonest scam to tax us a spectacular amount of equity on nothing but years of inflation (recently at high levels that are very, very convenient for a quasi-socialist "spend & burn" government because inflation erodes their staggering profligate debts while greatly raising tax receipts - particularly when they slash or even just abolish allowances... and of course "indexation" that made it slightly less unfair was abolished years ago)... and
    (2) weakness in the property market due to high interest rates & unaffordable & Limited mortgage "products"

    If it was a Sellers Market and CGT was minimal or abolished I think most of us would be out of here in a flash...

    The PRS is therefore held together by these two threads, both rigged by & very favourable to the self-interested uncaring government.

  • Matthew Payne

    What gets little press is how much lenders are takin the p*** and actually accelerating the rate of sales expoentially. Whilst the base rate is 5%, nearly all lenders have SVRs of 9.5% to try and force landlords to take a nasty 6% fixed rate so they can continue to profit after rates start to come down. The reality though is landlords are just getting out instead. I note also most banks arent offering isas any higher than the base rate though. Nice to have your cake and eat it.


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