Private landlords gain about £27 billion a year from housing benefit and tax breaks, according to the Generation Rent lobby group.
There are about 1.6 million buy-to-let landlords in the UK, and about 4.75 million households rent from them. Numbers both of landlords and of private tenants are rising.
The £27 billion total comes from:
£9.3 billion of housing benefit
£1.69 billion of “wear-and-tear” tax relief landlords can claim on their properties
£6.63 billion of tax that landlords do not have to pay on mortgage interest payments
£9.06 billion of tax landlords do not pay on their annual average capital gains
Generation Rent estimates the landlords’ total annual income at £77.7 billion — £42.3 billion in rent and £35.4 billion in rising house prices.
In 2013, just 22,510 new social homes were built, out of a total of 109,640 newbuilds. There are about 610,000 empty homes in England.