Buy-to-let landlords are showing few signs of cutting back on borrowing in the face of tighter credit conditions. Figures show that the sector increased its share of the overall mortgage market in the fourth quarter of 2007. Financial Times

The Council of Mortgage Lenders said that lenders advanced 84,800 new loans, totalling £11.6bn, to buy-to-let investors in the last three months of the year. New lending had slowed, from 94,300 advances totalling £12.5bn in the previous quarter, but was still significantly higher than in the same quarter of 2006.

Buy-to-let investors appear less affected by tighter credit conditions than people buying a property to live in, confounding fears that landlords with highly geared investments could pull out of the market in droves.

At the end of 2007, the maximum loan-to-value ratio lenders required from buy-to-let investors was constant at 85%, the CML said. Other conditions had even been relaxed: lenders on average required rental income equivalent to 120% of the mortgage payment, down from 125% six months earlier.