Government plans to axe Section 21 … and more property news

Posted: 19th Apr 2019

Here is our latest quick news round up for landlords and property owners.

Government plans to axe Section 21

The biggest threatened shake-up of some of the very foundations of buying to let came with the news reported by the Residential Landlords Association (RLA) on the 14th of April that the government is planning to abolish Section 21 of the Housing Act.

Currently an essential tool for landlords who need to repossess their property, the RLA argues vehemently that any such abolition of Section 21 notices is likely to backfire. Without recourse to a quick and easy way of legitimately repossessing properties from tenants who fail to pay their rent or engage in anti-social behaviour, many landlords are likely to lose confidence in investing in buy to let property.

The result is likely to be a further diminution of an already inadequate stock of private rented accommodation, they say.

£4,000 – the additional costs associated with moving

If you were surprised by the extra costs – on top of actually buying the home – when moving house, you are not alone.

A report in Property Wire on the 15th of April revealed that the average additional costs paid by those moving home comes to nearly £4,000 – with half of that going on legal fees alone and the remainder made up of expenditure on furniture, furnishings and appliances.

Some 40% of homebuyers admitted to being shocked by these extra costs and a third of those surveyed said they had had to borrow to pay for them.

Sharp decline in the number of BTL landlords in London

The introduction – in April 2016 – of the Stamp Duty surcharge on second homes may be to blame for a dramatic decline in the number of buy to let (BTL) landlords in London, said Landlord Today on the 15th of April.

Whereas property investors based in London have previously looked to buy homes in the capital, close to where they live, in the past year a surprising 59% of them have instead invested in property outside the capital (considerably up from the 25% or so who did that in 2010).

An estimated 34% of London-based property investors turned to buy to let accommodation in the North of England and in the Midlands – compared to just 14% of them who did so in 2010.

The top ten “must haves” homebuyers want

Have you ever given a second thought to the search terms you use when searching on the internet for property to buy?

On April the 9th, online estate agents Rightmove revealed the top ten keywords and filters used by visitors to their website.

The most popular search terms were words such as annexe, garage, and acre, but also included some unusual keywords like coach house, chapel and castle.

In searches for “must have property” information, respondents focused on subjects such as “amazing property”, DIY advice and home renovation, local area guides, housing market data, and features about the private rental sector.