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Recession fuels rise of ‘reluctant landlords’

The research also reveals younger homeowners are hardest hit by this issue, with a quarter of cash-strapped 18-34 year old homeowners considering renting out their home or taking in a lodger, while nearly 400,000 in the same age group already have a lodger.

Londoners are most inclined to look for additional rental income, with 190,000 taking in a tenant to make ends meet.

The research goes on to highlight how the majority of those considering the move to becoming a landlord have felt the brunt of the rocky property market.

Some 280,000 homeowners have considered renting because they want to sell their home but cannot find a buyer and a further 200,000 need the rental income to enable them to buy elsewhere.

In support of this, the National Landlords Association calculates that as many as 43% of landlords have come into the residential letting market by chance.

Unbiased.co.uk spokesman Richard Winder said: "The boom years created a wave of have-a-go landlords attracted by the promise of rising property prices and cheap buy-to-let finance.

"Now we’re seeing a new wave who may end up reluctant landlords because they need more money and don’t want to sell up in the current market.

"Before taking the plunge into what is a serious financial and social commitment, we would urge homeowners in this position to speak to a whole of market mortgage adviser to see whether they could cut their existing repayments, as well as talking through the opportunities and potential pitfalls of becoming a landlord."

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