Private landlords may struggle to add to their property portfolios in the coming year unless they can stump up a 20 per cent deposit, it has been claimed.

According to Moneyfacts, those who do not have sufficient funds available to them will find it difficult to obtain a new buy-to-let mortgage deal.

The organisation reports that 93 per cent of all deals in the buy-to-let sector have disappeared in the past 18 months, leaving many landlords with no option other than to switch to a standard variable rate mortgage at the end of their current deals.

"Buy-to-let lenders have also tightened criteria, restricting the size of portfolios that landlords can have, both in number of properties and maximum total advance,"said Moneyfacts analyst Michelle Slade.

As a result, she added, landlords had faced "a tough ride"over the last 12 months, with the picture unlikely to be any brighter for 2009.

Writing for the Telegraph this week, Melanie Bien of Savills Private Finance stated that meeting their mortgage payments would be the biggest challenge for private landlords during this year.ADNFCR-2002-ID-18977149-ADNFCR

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