The number of mortgage products for landlords has reached a landmark high as lenders show how desperate they are to grab a piece of the buy to let action.
Landlords have a choice of 2,162 different mortgage products – the most available since the financial crisis hit the market in October 2007.
Then, lenders were offering 3,305 buy to let loans.
Bank and building society trade body UK Finance statistics show the number of new buy to let mortgages taken out by landlords to purchase a property dropped by 11.5% from 74,606 to 66,400.
The value of the new loans totalled £9 billion – a 15% decrease from 2017.
However, most new buy to let mortgage business is remortgaging.
In 2018, the number of remortgages was up 11.2% from 152,068 to 169,100 loans worth £27 billion.
Darren Cook, a finance expert at moneyfacts.co.uk, an online mortgage tracker, said:
“It is encouraging that buy-to-let landlords have more mortgage choice than they have had at any time in almost 12 years. Total product numbers have increased by 397 over the past year and by 706 over the past two years to stand at 2,162 products.
“Despite ongoing uncertainty in the property market, providers are not shying away from offering landlords a greater choice of products, although it is also evident from our research that heightened competition to try and attract BTL business has not resulted in a fall in interest rates.”
Cook also explained lender thinking behind recent buy to let mortgage rate rises.
“As there appears to have been no sustained increases in interest SWAP rates since September 2018, a strong argument can be made that the recent increases to BTL mortgages interest rates have been a result of BTL mortgage providers attributing a little more to risk into their product rates due to uncertainty over future economic conditions,” he said.
SWAP rates are the interest rates banks and building societies pay to raise funds to lend.