According to a report by UK property sales website Rightmove, 2013 will see three quarters of landlords investing in new properties. Meanwhile, the number of first-time property investors has reached its highest level for a year.

Subdued house prices and the government’s Funding for Lending scheme are likely to be contributing factors in the growth in landlords’ portfolios across the UK. It is likely that landlords are in a better position to obtain more readily available mortgages than first time buyers.

Overall, the number of first time buyers in the UK is still very low, due to difficulties in obtaining finance, and stagnating wages. This has meant that more would-be home buyers are turning to private landlords to find a home. As a result, 2013 is set to be a prudent time for many landlords to either expand their portfolio, or invest in property for the first time.

Critics argue that with the expanding number of tenants in the UK should come greater regulation, particularly as regards non-refundable deposits and rent controls. It has also been argued the properties traditionally bought by first-time-buyers are being bought by landlords instead, a situation unlikely to change without a substantial new national house-building program.

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