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A noteworthy number of buy to let landlords in Britain plan to buy more properties over the next year notwithstanding the frustrations, challenges and seismic changes in the private rented sector. According to Aldermore, the specialist buy to let lender, their research shows around 41% of portfolio buy to let landlord’s objective is to grow their buy to let portfolio (portfolio landlords are landlords that own more than one property).

So, I thought, “Are Runcorn landlords feeling the same?” If so, if these numbers were applied to the Runcorn private rental market, what sort of effect would it have on the Runcorn property market as a whole?

Talking to the landlords I deal with, most are feeling quite optimistic about the future of the Runcorn rental market and the prospect it presents, notwithstanding the doom and gloom prophecies that the property market will shrink. Many of those Runcorn landlords who are looking to enlarge their portfolio are doing so because they still see the Runcorn rental market as a decent investment opportunity.

With top of the range bank and building society savings accounts only reaching 1.5% a year, the rollercoaster ride of cryptocurrency and the yo-yoing of the stock market, the simple fact is, with rental yields in Runcorn far outstripping current savings rates, the short-term prospect of a minor drop in property prices isn’t putting off Runcorn landlords.

The art of buying a Runcorn buy to let investment is to buy the profit on the purchase price, not the anticipation of the future sale price.

No matter what the old economy has thrown at us, with the global meltdown in 2008/9, dotcom crash of 2000, ERM in 1992, the three day week, oil crisis and hyperinflation in the 1970’s (the list goes on) the housing market has always bounced back stronger in the long term. That’s the point… long-term. Investing in buy to let is a long-term strategy. The simple fact is, over the long term with the increasing demand for rental properties, predominantly among millennials as many cannot afford to get on the property ladder, and with councils not building enough properties of any kind, many youngsters have to resort the private rental market for their accommodation needs.

So, what of the numbers involved in Runcorn?

438 landlords own just one buy to let property in Runcorn and 954 Runcorn landlords, who are portfolio landlords. Between those 954 Runcorn portfolio buy to let landlords, they own a total of 2,003 Runcorn buy to let properties, and they can be split down into the size of landlord portfolio in the graph below….


If I apply the Aldermore figures, that means 391 Runcorn landlords have plans to expand their buy to let portfolio in the coming year or so.

However, the Aldermore research also showed that 8% of private landlords intended to reduce the number of properties they own. They put this down to continuing Government intervention in the housing market (as many landlords mentioned too many limitations and higher taxation) while some believed that tenants are excessively protected to the disadvantage of the landlord.

I would say there is no repudiating that the buy to let market has taken a bit of a beating, thanks to a plethora of Government regulation, new mortgage underwriting rules in 2014 and George Osborne’s tax changes. Yet there remains an overall consciousness of optimism among the vast majority of Runcorn buy to let landlords. Despite these latest changes, many landlords still view buy to let as a good investment, as long as you buy right and expand your portfolio taking into account the second rule of buy to let… assess your position on the ‘buy to let seesaw’ of capital growth and yield.

If you want to buy right and assess your portfolio on the yield/capital growth seesaw… drop me a note. I don’t bite and the opinion I give, whether you are a landlord of mine or not as the case may be, is given freely, without obligation or cost. The choice is yours. Thank you for reading this article. To read others, please visit my Runcorn & Helsby Property News blog.