Lord Flight calls for Government rethink or risk Buy to Let crisis

Lord Flight calls for Government rethink or risk Buy to Let crisis

9:48 AM, 6th January 2016, About 7 years ago 5

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Lord Flight

Tory Peer Lord Howard Flight

Lord Howard Flight a Tory Peer and former Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury has written in the website “conservativehome – the home of conservatism” criticising the sudden attack on Buy to Let by his own party.

These attacks include the restriction of mortgage interest relief and a 3% Stamp Duty surcharge on second homes and investment property.

Lord Flight said “I hope the Government will re-think its sudden attack on Buy to Let this summer and autumn. Otherwise, it risks the very crisis in the Buy to Let housing and lending markets of which the Governor of the Bank of England has recently warned.”

“A significant increase in those selling Buy to Let properties may also put thousands of tenants’ security at risk as buyers will want to sell with vacant possession.”

Contrary to popular and misleading opinion Buy to let held no tax advantages over standard income tax practices of deducting expenses from income to calculate tax liability and is at a disadvantage to Owner Occupiers in terms of Capital Gains Tax.

Lord Flight went on to say “Buy to Let does not enjoy any of the major tax advantages of pension saving: i.e. tax credits on the amount invested and accumulation of income and capital gains free of tax within a pension scheme. The only Buy to Let tax advantage has been the ability for the interest cost to be offset against an individual’s income to determine their tax bills – the very thing which the Finance Act measure has hit by limiting the tax deductibility of mortgage interest to a 20 per cent tax rate. This will hit more modest Buy to Let investors the most, while many of the more sophisticated have their Buy to Let properties held via a company.”

Last month Lord Flight cc’d the Property118 Campaign Committee into an email to George Osbourne commenting on the restriction of Finance Cost Relief for Individual Landlords. >> http://www.property118.com/lord-flight-disagrees-with-landlord-tax-grab/83055/

In November last year Lord Flight spoke out against the “Landlord tax Grab” in the House of Lords >> http://www.property118.com/conservative-peer-speaks-out-against-tory-tax-grab/82321/

Interestingly as reported by the Telgraph 91 out of 330 conservative MPs (28%) own Buy to Let properties where the definition is a home worth more than £100,000 and bringing in a rental income of over £10,000 per year. 15 MPs have three or more and Bob Blackman MP for Harrow East has the most Buy to Let properties owning six in Welwyn Garden City.

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Mandy Thomson

11:20 AM, 6th January 2016, About 7 years ago

As a landlord, I am very grateful to Lord Flight for speaking up for BTL.

However, despite being a landlord, I would not oppose Clause 24 if I believed it was a fair and workable tax that was for the greater good of the economy - even if it did so at my expense. I am against it because it is NONE of those things and no doubt Lord Flight opposes it for this reason too.

Unfortunately, this comes too late for my membership of the Conservative party. I regret that I've already resigned my membership in the light of Clause 24 (even though I'm not personally affected) and the recent virulently anti-landlord remarks of a Conservative councillor.

Prior to this, I had been an extremely keen and committed member of the party, putting in many hours of my time playing my part in the 2015 general election.

Paul Norris

13:39 PM, 6th January 2016, About 7 years ago

As suggested by a previous member on another clause 24 article - all landlords should join the Conservative party so as to have member voting rights. We can then, when the time comes, vote against George Osbourne becoming the next leader of the Conservative party and possibly unelected PM. I think this is a great idea and if enough of us were to do this and it could be publicised I'm sure it would give Mr. Osbourne a new perspective on things!

Mandy Thomson

13:48 PM, 6th January 2016, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Paul Norris" at "06/01/2016 - 13:39":

I believe all small landlords should aim to form a landlord body that is big enough and has sufficient resource to enforce legislation and good letting practice, but also to fight the corner for landlords where there is unfair treatment by national or local government, or other large organisations.

I know we currently have the NLA (of which I'm an accredited member) and the RLA, as well as some others, but although these organisations do a lot of good work they are currently in NO position to act as a universal professional body for landlords in part at least because only a small number of landlords are currently members.

Simon Griffith

15:58 PM, 6th January 2016, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Paul Norris" at "06/01/2016 - 13:39":

Paul, have a look at this rather good website that I came across in one of the other threads http://www.saynotogeorge.co.uk It's very well done and has been quite innovative in appealing to tenants, trades, housing associations etc - not just landlords. All of my rent increase letters to tenants will include reference to this website, with the relevant MP contact details of course.

Chris Byways

19:30 PM, 6th January 2016, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mandy Thomson" at "06/01/2016 - 13:48":

This fragmentation does no one good. I understand they compete to some extent, don't know the politics, but some issues can be fought together.

Naive perhaps, but I feel SOME councils are far more approachable than others, from what little I have dealt with mine, I regard more highly than others I hear of.

Seems there is scope to collaborate to avoid many complaints escalating, by an 'independent' person to mediate, when is disrepair real or froth, or mould unacceptable, or due to life style, etc etc. Whether by a Council officer, or perhaps a non involved landlord and a, say, CAB person working together to look at a range of properties within an area, establish facts without prejudice. Allows a 'solution' to be offered. If not accrepted by either party, and a court finds the facts as Reported, that would influence any costs order. Could such a scheme be made into a viable option?

Both sides are often inexperienced, polarised, and have different expectations from reality. This could be part of a solution.

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