Sharp property price falls and an unexpected stamp duty holiday could entice professional buy-to-let landlords back into the lower end of the housing market over the next few months.

Cash-rich property investors, who were largely responsible for fuelling the recent housing bubble, were the surprise winners of the government’s plans to re-energise the faltering property market. The government said buyers could purchase properties worth up to £175,000 without incurring stamp duty for the next 12 months. Previously properties of £125,000 and above were liable for the tax.

Mortgage brokers said buy-to-let investors with large portfolios of properties may be better placed to buy as many first-time buyers were constrained by tighter mortgage criteria.

Financial Times