New figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) show that both the number of buy-to-let loans and the value of lending are at their highest level in 5 years. £5.1bn was advanced to landlords in the second quarter of this year, representing a 21% increase on the first quarter and a 31% increase on the same period last year. These new figures certainly tally with what we are currently experiencing at Rentify. We are adding rental properties to our website at a rate of 600 a week and now have 140,000 landlords and tenants registered with us, representing a significant rate of growth.
This renewed confidence from landlords is a result of the availability of both lower rates and more flexible criteria for mortgages (such as the allowance of longer fixed-term tenancies). Also, the fact that investors are seeing low returns on other assets, such as cash, has meant investors are looking elsewhere for higher returns and has surely provided a further stimulus to the buy-to-let market.
We expect this boom to continue into the foreseeable future. Not only is this recovery starting up from a very low base in the first place, but the Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney has recently announced that interest rates will be kept low until at least the end of 2016. This will keep mortgage costs down for landlords and continue to encourage investors towards property rather than other assets, like cash, which will carry on seeing low returns.