What is an accidental landlord?

Accidental landlord welcoming two renters to a property

An accidental landlord is someone who becomes a landlord, without intentionally setting out to become one when they bought the property. Instead, they find themselves needing or choosing to rent out a property they own or have received as a gift.

This might happen when they inherit a property, or when a couple buy a place together without selling the properties they may already own. Instead of selling the property, they decide to let it.

According to the 2021 English Private Landlord Survey, only 52% purchased their first rental property with the intention of renting it (a buy to let), and 42% were initially accidental landlords. 35% originally bought it to live in themselves. 8% of those surveyed had inherited the property or had received it as a gift.

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