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Landlords: how much profit could you make by selling your buy-to-let property?

With a raft of taxation and lending changes, there are signs that some landlords are leaving the buy-to-let sector. How much money do they currently stand to make by selling up? Here, we take a look at new research showing the regional differences in how much profit landlords make when they sell their buy-to-let properties.

  • If you’re a landlord and are considering consolidating your portfolio, call Which?

    Mortgage Advisers[1] on 0808 252 7987 for impartial, expert advice on your mortgage options.

Landlord buy-to-let profits

New research by the estate agency group Countrywide has found that landlords made an average of GBP86,851 when selling a rental property in 2017. These findings are based on landlords selling up after an average of 8.7 years of property ownership. While this figure might sound high, it’s less than the GBP92,886 made by the average owner-occupier, with capital gains tax bills eating into buy-to-let profits.

Regional variations

Perhaps unsurprisingly, London investors made the biggest profits, with more than a quarter (28%) doubling their initial investment and average profits clocking in at four times those in the rest of the UK.

This is in stark contrast to North East England, where a quarter of landlords didn’t make any profit at all.

Top local authorities for landlord profits

The picture varies only slightly when we look at local authorities rather than regions. Again, London dominates the list, but there are also places in the top 10 for Maldon in Essex, where landlords enjoy average profits of over GBP100,000, and Pendle in Lancashire (GBP19,525). The lowest percentage profits were found in Selby, North Yorkshire, where investors made GBP9,703 on average.

Rents in London rising most quickly

The average cost of a new let in Great Britain increased by 1.5% in February to GBP954 a month.

For the third month in a row, London rents increased at the fastest speed to reach GBP1,686. Scotland was the only region to see rents drop, with the monthly average now standing at GBP587.

Five changes for landlords in 2018

Landlords face continuing challenges that threaten to eat into their profits in 2018.

  1. Mortgage rates increasing: the Bank of England is likely to increase the base rate[2] soon, and the closure of the Term Funding and Funding for Lending[3] schemes could push up the cost of mortgages.
  2. Tighter lending regulations: portfolio landlords (those with four or more mortgaged properties) face stricter lending criteria[4]. Rather than supplying details of overall profits, landlords must now provide details of every property in their portfolio when applying for further finance.
  3. Mortgage interest tax relief cuts: from April landlords will only be able to offset 50% of their mortgage interest[5] when filing their tax return (currently 75%).

    This figure will steadily decrease until 2020, when it will be replaced by a tax credit worth 20% of mortgage interest.

  4. Landlord licensing: an increasing number of local councils are bringing in additional and selective licensing schemes, with landlords facing big fines if they don’t adhere to the rules. Check out our table to see if you need a licence[6].
  5. Energy efficiency regulations: from April, rented properties will need to have a minimum EPC rating of E[7] – with fines of up to GBP5,000 for those who breach the rules.

You can learn more about the challenges facing landlords in our full story on 12 things buy-to-let landlords need to know in 2018[8].

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Financial Services Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 527029). Which? Mortgage Advisers and Which?

Money Compare are trading names of Which?

Financial Services Limited.


  1. ^ Which?

    Mortgage Advisers (

  2. ^ base rate (
  3. ^ Term Funding and Funding for Lending (
  4. ^ stricter lending criteria (
  5. ^ 50% of their mortgage interest (
  6. ^ Check out our table to see if you need a licence (
  7. ^ minimum EPC rating of E (
  8. ^ 12 things buy-to-let landlords need to know in 2018 (

Operation Honeypot: How Bitdefender Gets Malware To Come In From The Cold

The term ‘honey pot’ may well have been invented by ex-British intelligence man and spy novelist John le Carre, but it’s a term that’s stuck – and is equally applicable in today’s virtual world. Cyber security specialists and researchers at Bitdefender[1] regularly set up honeypots of their own, as part of their ongoing efforts to spot and analyse how new and emerging types of malware operate. Broadly speaking, digital honeypots work like this; a piece of code imitates a node on the Internet but makes itself deliberately vulnerable, so people wanting to defraud, hack into or otherwise damage the intellectual property infect it – or a program written to specifically infect such vulnerabilities does what it’s designed to do.

Security companies like Bitdefender[2] leave these honeypot nodes around and record data on how viruses behave, then secure them again once they’ve gleaned enough information. Importantly, the recorded data will tell Bitdefender whether an attack is routine or something more unusual and innovative, requiring a new approach in defense – all of which helps in the ever-evolving war against cybercrime[3]. This has never been more important because criminal actors have a new way of getting into people’s networks[4]: the Internet of Things (IoT) is offering them more poorly-guarded points of entry than ever before.

IoT, in case you’re not familiar with the buzzphrase, is a term for a huge amount of items that are connected to the Internet but which may not have a display. If you have security cameras, baby monitors you can ‘see’ through your phone, fire sensors, a connected thermostat, lightbulb, smart home or office hub, then congratulations, you’re part of the Internet of Things. And it’s not as secure as you might have hoped. “Many times, these devices are battery powered and feature lightweight CPUs that barely can handle the things the IoT device has been designed to do,” says Bogdan Botezatu, senior e-threat analyst at Bitdefender[5].

Security, he says, would be an extra ‘feature’ which would complicate the design or increase the cost of the device which would then become more complex to set up. “For instance, not forcing a rule for complicated passwords or not forcing the user to change the default username and password can leave them vulnerable to outsiders,” he says. The lack of regulation in this sector combined with market forces inevitably means mistakes get made. In lieu of robust regulation[6], the best thing for users to do is remain vigilant.

For the security industry, vigilance extends to the digital equivalent of missions behind enemy lines, with honeypots forming a great first line of defence. “While a honeypot at the office or at home is nice, honeypots placed in financial, education, military or other sensitive verticals can attract a wider range of cyber-criminals with fixed, specific goals in mind,” says Botezatu. “A honeypot in a financial institution can inform us in real time about a potential digital robbery from within the bank’s network and so on.” None of this is about abandoning your automated home system or disconnecting your smart electricity and gas meters from the Internet.

It is about taking basic preventative measures – changing your username and password – and closing the door on people who will walk through and help themselves if it’s been left open. Meanwhile Bitdefender’s honeypots will go a long way to catching the more sophisticated attempts on security of banks and other vital bodies. You can browse and sign up for Bitdefender products, including the award-winning Bitdefender Internet Security product, here[7].

Le Creuset Honey Pot, Alessi Glass Family goblet[8]” by Didriks[9] is licensed under CC BY 2.0[10].


  1. ^ Bitdefender (
  2. ^ Bitdefender (
  3. ^ in the ever-evolving war against cybercrime (
  4. ^ have a new way of getting into people’s networks (
  5. ^ Bitdefender (
  6. ^ In lieu of robust regulation (
  7. ^ You can browse and sign up for Bitdefender products, including the award-winning Bitdefender Internet Security product, here (
  8. ^ Le Creuset Honey Pot, Alessi Glass Family goblet (
  9. ^ Didriks (
  10. ^ CC BY 2.0 (

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