There were 10 new renters for every available property in February, report | Personal Finance | Finance

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In February, there were about 10 people looking for a place to rent for every home available, says a report from the folks who know about houses, Propertymark.

Even though fewer people were looking for homes in February 2024, there weren’t enough homes for everyone who wanted one. This means it’s still really hard to find a place to rent, Propertymark explains.

The money people owe for their rent didn’t change much in February 2024.

Nathan Emerson, the boss of Propertymark, said: “In the residential lettings sector, tenant demand has marginally decreased.”

He also said: “However, stock levels have also decreased and overall, demand continues to outpace supply, in fact, there were around 10 new applicants registered in February for each available property.”

Sometimes rents go up or down depending on where you live and what kind of home you want, but they’re starting to stay the same more often.

This information comes from a survey that Propertymark does every month with its members all over the UK.

At the same time, the group UK Finance said that landlords borrowed a lot less money at the end of 2023 than they did the year before.

Landlords are also paying more interest on their loans now than they were last year.

As 2023 came to an end, the number of buy-to-let mortgages in arrears greater than 2.5 percent of the outstanding balance had risen by a whopping 123.9 percent compared to the same time the previous year.

The number of buy-to-let repossessions was also up by 56.3 percent compared to the same period in 2022, with around 500 cases recorded in the last quarter of 2023.

A blog post on the UK Finance website explained: “With higher rates reducing profitability, we have seen weaker demand for new BTL (buy-to-let) loans for house purchase, starkly reflected in the value of new BTL house purchases falling 56 percent in (the fourth quarter of) 2023 compared with the final quarter of 2022.”

It added that at £1.8 billion, this was the lowest level of activity since 2013, excluding the housing market shutdown during the early pandemic months.

The blog, co-authored by Ermir Selmani, analyst, data and research at UK Finance and Ronnell Reffell, manager, mortgages policy at UK Finance, continued: “Just 0.68 percent of all BTL mortgages are in arrears this is lower than in the residential sector, as it has been for many years.”

Mortgage lenders remain prepared to support landlords struggling with mortgage payments offering forbearance tailored to the individual landlord’s circumstances. It is, therefore, vital that landlords reach out to their lender as soon as possible if concerned about their payments.”

“Despite the current challenges facing the sector, rental demand remains strong, and most landlords are showing resilience.”

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