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A new survey reveals the top landlord concerns for 2024 and how these differ across regions in the UK. What are your peers' biggest worries for the year, and how can you navigate these challenges?

Digital mortgage lender Molo released findings from its recent survey asking landlords to select their biggest worries for the year.

The survey, which gave landlords a list of 15 options to select their top five concerns, breaks down the responses by region, providing a snapshot of how your landlord peers are performing across the UK.

Below, we look at the top five concerns and how you can navigate these challenges.

1. Rising interest rates and mortgage payments

Nearly half of all landlords surveyed (47%) said that mortgage rates going up was among their top five worries for the year, making this the most significant concern facing landlords. Regionally, this is the primary concern for Birmingham landlords, with 54% ranking increasing mortgage costs as their top concern for 2024. Landlords in the capital follow closely behind, with 49% of London landlords noting rising interest rates as one of the most pressing issues this year.

How to manage rising interest rates and mortgage payments

After the market volatility we saw throughout 2023, it’s unsurprising that rising interest rates and mortgage costs remain the top concern for landlords. However, it’s important to note that this year’s outlook is much more positive.

To help reduce mortgage costs, you should consider:

  • Shopping around. Use our simple buy to let calculator to see what rates you could secure.
  • If your mortgage allows and you’re able to, overpaying will help reduce interest costs in the long run
  • Using a broker. Have an expert (like us!) review your property finances to help identify areas you could save and find more suitable products.


2. Tenants unable to afford rent payments

Tenants unable to pay rent just missed the top spot for the top landlord concerns, with 44%, or just over two-fifths, concerned about how their tenants will afford rent.

Furthermore, 15% of all landlords asked voted this their number one concern. Manchester has the highest number of landlords facing this concern, as a staggering 59% place this among their top five worries for the year.

It’s perhaps unsurprising that this issue weighs on so many landlords’ minds. Molo’s research reveals that 59% of UK landlords have noted an increase in late payments since 2021 due to the cost-of-living crisis, with over half having either set up payment plans to support tenants in arrears or reducing their rental prices altogether.

How to protect yourself against non-paying tenants

If your tenants are struggling to make rent payments or aren’t making any at all, it’s essential to keep lines of communication open. It might be that you can come to an agreement that helps ease everyone’s financial stress. Joining a landlord association like iHowz can be a great way to access support and legal advice for such situations.

For greater protection against non-paying tenants, you can take out Legal and Rent Guarantee Insurance. We’re partnered with the award-winning Alan Boswell Group, which specialises in landlord insurance. Click here for more information and to get an insurance quote.


3. Changes to tax laws

36% of landlords ranked changes to tax laws amongst their top five concerns for the year. Molo notes that this covers buy to let income tax rates and the reduction of capital gains tax allowances.

Mark Michaelides, the VP of Strategy at Molo, comments that the “seemingly ever-changing tax landscape can feel difficult to navigate. With the recent changes, many landlords have seen their profits impacted.”

How to keep up with changes to tax laws

Unfortunately, there’s not much you can control when it comes to tax changes. However, knowledge is vital.

While we can’t give tax advice, we’ll always report on tax changes in our free weekly newsletter. We’ll always discuss possible tax changes, meaning you can stay ahead of the changes and take action if needed.

If you’re concerned about upcoming tax changes, speak to a qualified tax advisor, ideally specialising in property investment. Remember, while complicated investment structures may save you some tax, they could impact your ability to apply for mortgages. You can speak to our team about how any changes to your investment structure could affect your ability to apply for a mortgage.


4. Rising maintenance and redecorating costs

The impacts of rising inflation are still being felt amongst landlords, with 34% citing the costs of maintenance and redecorating as one of the biggest concerns for the year. As the costs of sourcing both the materials and labour remain high, many landlords will be looking for ways to save on maintenance, such as DIY solutions and buying quality furnishings to last longer.

How to help fund maintenance and redecorating costs

Keeping on top of maintenance and decorating is a challenge and can be expensive. And unfortunately, falling behind on these things can lead to longer void periods if the property isn’t as desirable as others in the same area, impacting your profits.

The more you can do yourself will help keep costs down, but this isn’t always a practical solution. Many of our clients have a reliable team of traders they call on for jobs, which may get you preferential rates if you establish a good working relationship with them. If you use letting agents, they should also be able to recommend trusted suppliers.

However, bridging or refurbishment finance can be viable options for bigger projects like new kitchens and bathrooms and complete redecoration. Speak with one of our experts about your plans and see if there’s a finance option that will help you.


5. Landlord insurance costs increasing

Finally, landlord insurance is on many property investors’ minds, with 34% placing this among their top concerns. While some of you might be comfortable with the basic level of insurance landlords require, others may be reluctant to be without extra protections, making it challenging to reduce costs. Ultimately, it’s down to personal choice.

How to save on landlord insurance costs

Like your own car or home insurance, shopping around for a good deal is essential. MFB is proud to partner with award-winning insurance provider Alan Boswells. With a wealth of experience and competitive options, get a quote for your landlord insurance here.

Hopefully, we’ve given you some valuable tips to help combat these top landlord concerns.
To find out how MFB can help, speak to one of our expert mortgage makers on 0345 345 6788.
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