Press Release Summary: In a period when the property market has seen falling prices, restricted credit and one of the biggest mortgage lenders in the land having first to go begging to the Bank of England to stay afloat and now be nationalised
Press Release Body: In a period when the property market has seen falling prices, restricted credit and one of the biggest mortgage lenders in the land having first to go begging to the Bank of England to stay afloat and now be nationalised, some might expect that buy-to-let investors should concentrate purely on riding out the storm in the hope that by taking a long-term view their investments will bear fruit in years to come.
Not so, it seems. Today Alliance & Leicester stated that the expectations of mortgage brokers were much higher than that, with the market tipped to do well despite the current economic and property market issues with which everyone has become so familiar.
The director of intermediary sales at Alliance & Leicester, Mark Blackwell, said: \"Investing in buy-to-let properties should be seen as a long-term investment. Despite this, brokers expect nearly 80 per cent of landlords to make a positive return on their investment this year.\"
Such a statement may seem a daunting one for some investors, but it may also indicate the persistently high level of confidence in the ability of the industry to keep on doing well.
Mr Blackwell added that this was certainly the prevailing view, even if those with larger portfolios were best placed to deal with whatever this year may contrive to throw at them, commenting: \"The buy-to-let market will continue to be a significant part of the overall housing market for investors and broker sentiment indicates that buy-to-let will continue to deliver in 2008. Those with multiple properties and a higher proportion of fixed-rate lending are most likely to be able to withstand any house price cooling and fluctuating base rates.\"
Of course, the current fluctuations in the base rate appear to be in only one direction, which is good news for anyone whose borrowings may come down as a result. A Reuters poll, the first after last week\'s Bank of England quarterly inflation report, found that the consensus appeared to have drawn back from the money market\'s prediction of a cut to 4.5 per cent which the bank specifically said was unlikely to be attainable in the light of inflationary pressures. However, the scaling back was only by 0.25 per cent. Of the 54 questioned, 53 tipped another rate cut by June, with the consensus also being that there would be another trimming in September, with the consequent 4.75 per cent base rate remaining in situ until March 2009.
Last week, Birmingham Midshires produced research to back the notion that 2007 had been a great year for buy-to-let, with its figures indicating that the average total return for an investor last year was 16.3 per cent, compared with 13.5 per cent in 2006. Add to this an increase in rents of 13.1 per cent and in the value of rental properties by 10.9 per cent and the picture looks healthy. Perhaps it is because buy-to-let has been so strong that the brokers believe that optimism about returns in 2008 is justified.
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