Buy-to-let properties have bucked the housing market trend in recent years, seeing steady growth in lending.
Partly this is because new finance to owner-occupiers has dropped off so much since the credit crunch: the lack of mortgage availability, particularly for first-time buyers, has fuelled a booming rental market. Demand is pushing up the cost to tenants: average rents are up 4.3% year-on-year.
All this makes buy-to-let an exciting prospect for investors.
- New buy-to-let lending, £m (source: CML)
But buy-to-let mortgages are looking increasingly risky, according to detailed new data from the Council of Mortgage Lenders.