Tenants being offered rented home to buy

A range of mortgage brokers are reporting an increase in enquiries from private tenants who have been given first refusal to buy the homes they are renting.

They report that tenants are being made the offer on the basis of landlords wanting to sell because of a cocktail of stricter energy efficiency requirements in the pipeline, higher interest rates, and concerns over the cost of living crisis.

Lewis Shaw, founder of Shaw Financial Services says: “Over the past six to eight weeks, we’ve seen an enormous uptick in enquires from tenants who have been given first refusal to buy the property they’re renting from their landlord, often with an element of gifted equity. Off the back of that, I’ve spoken to several brokers heavily involved in the buy-to-let space and they’re seeing lots of their landlord clients looking to offload the parts of their portfolios that are either low yielding or have an EPC below C. 

“We are arguably witnessing the start of the Great Landlord Sell-off as buy-to-let becomes a less attractive investment due to tax changes in interest relief, stamp duty land tax and new EPC rules due to hit in 2025. Increasingly, amateur landlords are deciding to call it a day … they can ask agents what the market value of the property is and then sell directly to the tenants to avoid any agents’ fees.”

A full 25 per cent of landlords admitted they would sell some or all of their properties if this proposal happens. That rose to 32 per cent of those landlords with large portfolios of 20 or more properties.



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