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What Kind of Property Investor Are You? Part 1: The 'Private Landlord'

Most property investors start their investing career by operating in their own personal name. But what do you tell lenders, friends, family, tenants and 'nosey parkers' when they ask about your business structure?

This article explains how to describe yourself, and operate day to day, where you operate your property business in your own personal name.  

What exactly is a 'Private Landlord'?
Operating as a 'Private Landlord' is the most common way to invest in residential property to rent out. The large majority of landlords own their properties in their own personal name, usually because that is the easiest way to get mortgages at good rates and Loan-To-Values.  

For business and tax purposes, this is known as operating as a 'Private Landlord'.  When such an investor is asked about their business structure, they would say that they are a 'Private Landlord'.

So, I'm not a Sole Trader then?
No, a 'Sole Trader' is an individual that buys and sells products, or sells a service. Typical examples are plumbers, electricians, taxi drivers etc. Like a Private Landlord, a Sole Trader operates their business in their own personal name. However, crucially, unlike a Private Landlord, Sole Traders pay National Insurance at approximately 10% on their business profits - this typically means 50% more tax payable than a Private Landlord on the same income!

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