There has been a surge in house-buying activity by landlords.
Independent research commissioned by specialist buy-to-let lender Paragon Mortgages has revealed that in the first quarter of this year, landlords increased their portfolio size from an average of nine to 10.8 properties.
Independently, auctioneers are reporting increasing numbers of buy-to-let purchasers in sales rooms.
The report, produced by independent researchers BDRC Continental, also shows that 20% expect to purchase more property over the next 12 months, and that the average rental property houses 1.3 tenants.
Terrace houses continued to be the most popular property choice for investment (64%), followed by flats and semi-detached houses.
Tenant profiles remained largely unchanged in Q1 with young singles still the most prolific tenant type, followed by young couples and families with children. Attitudes around being a landlord remained positive and 89% of those surveyed said that they are satisfied with their current tenancies.
Landlords were also asked to comment on the level of communication they have with their tenants, and the majority (39%) speak to their tenants every two to three months, and 27% once a month.
John Heron, director of Paragon Mortgages, said: “It has been a steady and progressive start to 2012. While landlords are still benefiting from attractive market conditions, there is still a long way to go to meet the increasingly high level of tenant demand.
“More investment across the private rented sector is needed during the coming year to help to meet this demand.”
Chris Baguley, ofFinance, a firm specialising in making bridging loans to property purchasers at sales, said there is increasing interest from buy-to-let buyers. He said: “Savvy investors are continuing to snap up properties and are looking to rooms.”