Mortgage Express doubles maximum buy-to-let loan

Research among its customers has shown that, far from being concerned about the future of the market, 63% of landlords are looking to increase their portfolios over the next two years. And because of the rising cost of property - particularly in the South East - its previous total loan limit of £1 million was too restrictive.

Commenting on the move, product development manager Roger Hillier, said: "Despite speculation in the press that the market may be saturated and that the buy-to-let bubble is about to burst, it's clear to us - as we've said all along - that property investors are confident in its long-term prospects. So we've responded with a maximum total loan increase, which will allow landlords to capitalise on this and which takes into account the rise in property prices."

Buy-to-let facts:

· Average buy-to-let loan is £80,200, rising to £202,800 in prime areas of Central London.

· London and the South East account for 48.3% of all buy-to-let lending

· Average rental return is 6.5% in the South East, 7.4% in the rest of the UK

· Average void period is 6 weeks in prime areas of Central London, 36 days in the rest of the UK

· Three quarters of all buy-to-let lending is arranged through financial intermediaries

Source: Association of Residential Letting Agents