Landlords in the UK are still expanding their property portfolios, despite facing higher costs due to inflation and interest rates, according to research conducted by Shawbrook. The study surveyed over 1,000 residential landlords in the UK and found that 88% of portfolio landlords, those with five or more rental properties, had added to their portfolios in the last six months. Additionally, 25% of these landlords plan to invest in an additional property within the next year, and 22% intend to purchase multiple properties. Meanwhile, landlords with between one and four rental properties showed slightly less enthusiasm, with only 58% having added to their portfolio in the last six months.

The research also revealed that a significant number of landlords looking to diversify their portfolios were interested in different locations (39%), while 37% were exploring different types of residential property. Student housing was a focus for 26% of portfolio landlords, while 21% were looking at the retirement housing market.

When asked about the reasons behind diversifying their property portfolios, 33% of respondents said they were doing so in response to tenant demand, while 28% were prioritizing more energy-efficient buildings. Of the landlords planning to add at least one property to their portfolio, 36% said they wanted to take advantage of current market deals, and 35% already had capital ready to invest.

Emma Cox, managing director of Real Estate at Shawbrook, commented on the findings, stating, “Whilst the property market remains challenging, it’s encouraging to see professional landlords continuing to invest and seek opportunities to diversify. Our research has shown that a significant number of landlords have taken proactive steps to expand their portfolios while responding to demand to add quality, energy-efficient rental stock to the market for renters.”