The Lloyds Bank group - the taxpayer owned bank - has announced that it is slashing the amount it will lend to landlords by nearly 80%.
Previously the group, which now includes Lloyds TSB, the Cheltenham & Gloucester, Halifax and Birmingham Midshires would have lent a combined £14m to a single applicant (subject to all the usual criteria). Last week the bank reduced that figure to £3m.
In our opinion there is no commercial reason for the bank to take this action at this time. According to all the recently published data house prices are, at worse, stabilising. Landlord defaults are reducing and interest rates are at an all time low.
The crucial point here is that we, the taxpayers, own this bank. NetRent.co.uk calls on the Government to explain why it continues to allow banks like Lloyds to take decisions like this.
The Government has continually said that it will make the banks support small and medium sized businesses. Most landlords are small and medium sized businesses and yet we see absolutely no evidence that any of the banks are proactively helping landlords. In fact they are, like Lloyds, are doing exactly the opposite.
Can you explain it Mr Brown and Mr Darling?