Changes in stamp duty and forthcoming tax hikes are having a major effect on the buy-to-let mortgage market, according to new figures released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML).
Landlords borrowed £3billion in October, that is up 7% on last month, but down 21% on the same time last year and 25% down on October 2015.
The figures show that nearly two thirds of buy-to-let loans were remortgages, rather than house purchases.
Mortgage lending in general was down by 11% in October this year than the same time last year, with £10.5billion borrowed to buy houses. First time buyers account for £4.5billion of this, while home movers borrowed £5.9billion, down 9% on last month and 18% on last year.
Remortgaging was only area where the CML saw a significant increase in activity year on year, with £6.1billion borrowed, up by 11% on September and 7% compared to the same time last year.
Ross Hooper-Nash, Managing Director of Jeffrey Ross Estate Agents, said: “These are interesting statistics that show that the market is slowing down.
“The buy-to-let market has really been hit with prospective landlords now weighing up the extra costs the increase in stamp duty and impending tax relief changes would have on the yield of their properties.
“I don’t think this is good news for the Cardiff market as we need more rental properties and these extra costs are clearly putting people off investing in property.”
Ross added: “It will be interesting to see what happens in the coming months as some mortgage providers have been pulling market leading products as fears that the base interest rates will soon increase.
“I can’t see the buy-to-let market improving as pressure is put on mortgage providers to ensure that more stringent affordability checks are carried out on buy-to-let borrowers and associated tax costs increase.”