The number of buy to let mortgages for landlords has dropped to 1,792 - and in comparison to last year that’s a significant 819 fewer deals available.
This data comes from independent financial service Moneyfacts and spokeswoman Eleanor Williams says: “After dropping to 1,455 products available to landlords in May, the earlier resilience and increase in product choice in the buy to let market seems to have taken a small hit recently, with product numbers now lower than the 1,825 our records show as on offer in October.
“With 1,792 deals now available, we have however seen an increase of 20 products come to market since the start of November, but current totals still represent a 38 per cent contraction in the market when compared to March, before the onset of the pandemic."
Moneyfacts says 80 per cent is currently the highest Loan To Value available to landlords since the handful of 85 per cent LTV deals were withdrawn in mid-October.
The choice of products in the 80 per cent LTV tier has shrunk by 25 deals since the start of November, with 74 now on offer and resulting in less choice for those landlords with lower levels of equity or deposit.
Williams continues: ”In the 60 per cent LTV bracket, although there are 100 fewer products available now than there were in July, prospective borrowers with 40 per cent deposit or equity may wish to note that five additional products have been launched since the beginning of November.
“Perhaps equally disappointing to those looking to explore their BTL mortgage options now will be the fact that average rates have continued to increase. The overall average two-year fixed BTL rate at all LTVs has increased for six consecutive months, and at 2.90 per cent is 0.01 per cent higher than at the start of November, and 0.13 per cent higher than in March.
“The equivalent five-year average rate has increased over the last four months, but at 3.26 per cent, this has seen a small reduction of 0.02 per cent since the start of November. However, both rates are now higher than the same rates were in March, which was before the onset of the pandemic and prior to base rate being cut twice.”
Williams believes that the trend of rates increasing is echoed across the LTV spectrum.
She concludes: “Landlords who are considering investing or refinancing their BTL properties may wish to explore their options soon – both in order to capitalise on the possible savings available via the stamp duty holiday before this expires at the end of March 2021, but also before rates potentially increase even further. While average rates have risen recently, competitive deals are still available and therefore seeking support and guidance from a qualified professional may be invaluable in securing the best product for individual circumstances.”