The private rented sector in the UK could be set to contract in size as property sales by existing landlords are predicted to outstrip purchases by the end of this year, it is suggested.
The warning from the National Landlords Association (NLA) comes at a time when the latest English Housing Survey shows that the private rented sector plays an increasingly significant role, accounting for 20% of the country’s housing mix.
An analysis of members’ property transactions by the NLA shows that net growth, that is property purchases minus sales, has fallen by 63%.
The research also shows that the proportion of existing landlords looking to buy properties in the coming year has fallen to its lowest ever point at 16% and the proportion of existing landlords who intend to sell property in the next year has more than doubled since July 2015 from 7% to 16%.
This represents the lowest stated intentions for landlords to invest since the NLA’s quarterly landlord panel began 10 years ago and the NLA is now predicting a net reduction of property transactions by 2018.
“There has been a clear correlation over the past year between our findings on what landlords have told us they intend to do in terms of buying and selling in the coming year and their actual transaction activity,” said Richard Lambert, NLA chief executive officer.