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Accidental landlords account for 23% of those who rent out residential property, according to research from Foundation Home Loans.

The research, among 1,000 landlords, found that 14% got themselves in this situation via an accidental circumstance such as through marriage, relocation or other circumstance, while 9% inherited their properties.

Another 23% of landlords questioned became a landlord purely for financial reasons, considering it to be an attractive investment, with 21% planning to use earned rental income to fund their retirement plans.

One in five landlords (21%) said they are full time and do not have another job, with the greatest proportion doing so in London. Foundation Home Loans says that demand in London stems mainly from young professionals seeking properties close to where they work.

Six out of 10 (60%) have another full-time job and are landlords in their spare time, while a fifth (19%) have a part-time job but spread their time among their various landlord duties.

Regardless of how the circumstance came about, or how much time is spent on day-to-day management, one in seven (17%) said they intended to increase the size of their portfolio in the next 12 months.  

Jeff Knight, marketing director at Foundation Home Loans, said: “With so much regulation introduced into the buy-to-let market in the last few years, it could be easy for those who are unplanned landlords to make a swift exit rather than stay and navigate the red tape.

“That said, no matter how they found themselves owning rental property, it’s clear they are interested by the buy-to-let market for a variety of reasons and objectives, financial or otherwise.

“Considering the rental sector forms an increasingly important part of the housing mix, landlords need to be armed with the right advice. Our findings indicate plenty of the ‘accidental landlords’ are looking to expand their portfolios and remain invested in the market, which will ultimately have a positive impact on quality and choice for renters.”

Source: Mortgage Finance Gazette

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