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LendInvest launches into buy to let

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  • 16/11/2017
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LendInvest launches into buy to let
The specialist property finance lender has launched buy-to-let (BTL) loans targeting professional landlords and property investors in the UK.

The BTL product is composed of a range of two, three and five-year fixed loans, which are available for amounts between £50,000 and £5m, and available on terms up to 30 years.

Starting at a loan-to-value (LTV) of 60%, the product range goes to a maximum LTV of 80%.

It is available via intermediaries, and can be accessed by both individuals and limited companies.

To speed up applications and to enhance administrative support to LendInvest’s underwriting team, the lender also has an online platform that brokers can use to apply for the BTL product on behalf of their clients.

Ian Boden, sales director at LendInvest, said: “Today we’re bringing to market a BTL product that has been created to counter the complaints and concerns we hear from brokers about the quality and accessibility of BTL loans currently on offer.”

“Our online proposal system has been specially designed to be highly efficient, quick and easy to navigate, and lets brokers dip in and out of their clients’ applications at times that suit them,” added Boden.

Headwinds

According to Moneyfacts, the total number of BTL products has increased from 1,558 in May 2017 to 1,820 this November – this growth comes despite recent concerns that the BTL market is facing strong headwinds.

Earlier this November, Mortgage Solutions reported that one in five landlords were set to reduce the number of properties in their portfolio over the next year. And at The Mortgage and Protection Event yesterday, Ian Carswell, regional manager for the North of England at BM Solutions, said the BTL market was expected to shrink from an estimated £35bn this year to between £31bn and £32bn in 2018.

However, analysis by London Central Portfolio (LCP) and Acadata also suggested that London was seeing signs of recovery after a period of volatility.

Nevertheless, Ian Thomas, co-founder and chief investment officer at LendInvest, said the BTL product was a “critical strategic step” and a “natural next step for LendInvest, taking us into the longer duration specialist lending space for the first time.”

“Following a successful pilot phase, we are very pleased to launch our BTL product into England, Wales and Scotland,” said Thomas.

Boden added: “Recent tax and regulatory change in the BTL market has certainly been felt by landlords and investors but it has, to some extent, distorted the public’s understanding of the market’s health and prospects.”

He also cited predictions from UK Finance that, despite the exit of many amateur landlords from the market, the BTL market will still be sizeable at around £35-40bn.

“We’ve seen no evidence of the demand for specialist, professional loan products diminishing. During our pilot phase, demand was strong in London and the South East where volume is traditionally highest, as well as broad interest among all our field-based sales team members working with brokers in the North, South, Midlands and Scotland. Where house price growth remains positive and volumes remain buoyant, there are landlords looking to remortgage and build their investment portfolios with new purchases,” said Boden.

“The stability of the market comes down to the professional landlords and investors in the market for whom it’s business as usual. These are the people that we have always liked to lend to, and who we are targeting with our new BTL proposition,” he added.

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