Paul Bumford, Financial Services Director comments:
This maybe the first or just the most recent time you’ve read about the many changes surrounding the buy-to-let (BTL) sector in recent months. The changes I’d like to talk about today are from the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) proposal to change in the way lenders check any prospective borrower’s ability to repay their loans on BTL properties. I believe we should take care when assessing the latest information from the PRA regarding BTL lending. Some pundits would say it’s a step too far, too soon, especially since the Chancellor’s changes proposed in the autumn of last year. Of course there will, I’m sure undoubtedly be an impact on the current BTL market as we know it now. However others would say it is a prudent step to bring BTL lending fully into line with residential borrowing requirements. This would also potentially help on a broader scale to protect the UK economy from a downturn situation similar to that experienced back in 2007, as we now know in hindsight this was shown to be accelerated by unsubstantiated lending in the housing market. I believe we will see the BTL market find its own level should these changes come into effect. Whatever the future holds I think we can be sure that the BTL sector will remain a strong business property investment in long term for serious investors.