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Industry News


Number of overseas landlords reaches a five-year high


cent over the last five years according to residential property market experts Ludlowthompson. The rise in the number of overseas landlords


T


shows that Brexit has not been a deterrent for those looking to invest in UK property. In fact, many overseas investors have capitalised on the drop in the value of Sterling between the EU referendum and the Brexit deal to add to their portfolios. Favourable exchange rates have meant foreign buyers were able to get more for their money, opening the market up to a wider pool of investors. Ludlowthompson says despite tax changes,


including a two per cent Stamp Duty surcharge that will increase costs for overseas investors, property in the UK will remain an attractive long-term investment prospect for investors from many overseas jurisdictions. The UK property market has traditionally been


resilient in times of economic uncertainty and a structural shortage of properties has kept rental yields relatively strong. In recent years there has been an increase in the


number of Hong Kong buyers of UK property. This is expected to rise following the launch of the new visa for Hong Kong British National Overseas passport holders. The reputation of schools and universities in the


UK has also benefitted the property market. Ludlowthompson says many overseas landlords


he number of overseas landlords owning property in the UK has hit a five-year high of 184,000 – marking an increase of 19 per


who have purchased property have done so to provide accommodation for their children who were studying in the UK. Overseas landlords have been benefitting from


the Stamp Duty holiday, which has enabled buyers to save as much as £15,000 on properties worth up to £500,000. The holiday is set to run until June 30th after which point Stamp Duty will be reintroduced on properties worth £250,000, and will apply to properties over the £125,000 threshold from September 30th. While overseas landlords have benefited from the holiday, from April 1st they will be liable to pay a 2 per cent Stamp Duty surcharge on property investments.


Stephen Ludlow, Chairman at Ludlowthompson


says: “Fears that Brexit might dampen the appeal of UK property amongst overseas investors have been unfounded, with the number of overseas landlords reaching a record high.” “Many canny investors took advantage of the


temporary drop in Sterling’s value to purchase properties in the UK and benefited from both an increase in property prices and a recovery in sterling. Investments by overseas landlords into UK buy-to-let properties has ensured that there has been a steady stream of capital into that sector, which has kept the quality of rental stock far higher than would have been the case with these investors.”


About 700,000 tenants served with ‘no-fault’ eviction notices


An estimated 700,000 private tenants have been served with “no-fault” eviction notices since the start of the pandemic, despite a Government promise to scrap them. Section 21 eviction notices are still in use and


ministers are facing calls to deliver on their promise from a new coalition for reform of renters’ rights, which includes the charities Generation Rent, Crisis and Shelter, as well as Citizens Advice and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. The renters’ reform bill, which promised to


abolish no-fault evictions, was announced in the last Queen’s speech in December 2019 but has not yet been delivered. Of private renters who responded to a Survation


survey, eight per cent had received a Section 21 notice from their landlord since March 2020, which would represent 694,000 private renters across England. A further 32 per cent were concerned they would be asked to move out this year.


“It is a massive relief and hugely welcome that the government has decided to drop its proposal to massively


loosen the duty for developers to build affordable homes.” Tom Fyans, the deputy chief executive of CPRE


Polly Neate, the chief executive of Shelter, said


private renters have “had a bad deal for too long – living at the mercy of a broken and unfair system”. “As we emerge from this crisis, Boris Johnson must keep his promise to bring the bill forward and give every renter the security and rights they need,” she said. Campaigners have welcomed a U-turn by


the Government on one aspect of affordable housing policy. Ministers have signalled that they will not raise the minimum threshold at which developers of new housing estates are


16 | HMM June/July 2021 | www.housingmmonline.co.uk


required to provide affordable units from 10 to 40 or 50 homes, as originally proposed in draft planning reforms. Tom Fyans, the deputy chief executive of CPRE,


said: “Rural communities are facing unprecedented pressure when it comes to housing – rising house prices and low rates of affordable housebuilding are only making this situation more precarious. So, it is a massive relief and hugely welcome that the government has decided to drop its proposal to massively loosen the duty for developers to build affordable homes.”


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