New campaign urges government to treat landlords more fairly

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The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) is campaigning for the government to treat landlords more fairly by reversing some of their recent changes in the March budget, reported in February 2017.

The RLA claims that a number of changes in the buy-to-let rules have resulted in a 63% drop in buy to let purchases in 2016. The changes include stamp duty increases, tax relief reductions and the proposed ban in letting fees. New affordability rules make it more difficult for landlords to obtain commercial mortgages.

The government has recently published a white paper that looks at how to increase the number of new properties built for the rental sector, but the RLA was disappointed that the paper did not address the concerns of buy-to-let landlords.

The RLA wants last year’s 3% increases in stamp duty for buy-to-let properties to be abolished for landlords who add to the housing stock by refurbishing empty properties or convert properties for renting. It views the reduction of tax relief on mortgage interest payments as unfair and wants the government to look at this issue.

RLA chairman Alan Ward said:

“This is not just a wish list that will benefit landlords and tenants, but one that will benefit the economy as a whole. The Treasury Select Committee warned a year ago that measures taken to curb buy to let would come at a cost to the wider economy, and we would ask the Government to take heed of this.”

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