One in four landlords don’t feel on top of changing regulations

  • More than a third (36 per cent) of those who struggle with changing regulations say it’s difficult to keep up with the pace of change
  • Nearly six in 10 (58 per cent) landlords say keeping up with regulatory change is stressful
  • A third (33 per cent) of landlords who find regulatory change stressful are considering selling their property

One in four landlords (24 per cent) don’t feel on top of changing regulations, according to new research by Direct Line business insurance.1

Of those who said they didn’t feel on top of the regulatory landscape, 36 per cent say it is difficult to cope with the speed of change, 27 per cent wouldn’t know where to start when it comes to understanding regulations, while one in five (20 per cent) struggle to find the time to deal with it. A fifth (20 per cent) say they can’t afford the necessary legal advice and more than one in 10 (13 per cent) find it challenging to comprehend regulations and how exactly they are affected.

The research also revealed a worrying lack of awareness of several important regulatory issues and trends:

Levels of awareness of regulatory changes and trends among landlords – Direct Line business insurance, 2022 

Regulatory issue  Proportion of landlords who are not aware of the issue 
Licensing scheme changes 16 per cent
The possibility of health and safety regulations  15 per cent
Additional sustainability standards to conform to 13 per cent
New smoke and carbon monoxide alarm requirements  12 per cent
Changes to filing deadlines for reporting and paying capital gains tax on the disposal of properties 11 per cent
Planned changes to minimum standards for Energy Performance Certificates  10 per cent
Inflation and the effect this could have on buy-to-let mortgages  7 per cent

These issues are also having a psychological impact on landlords. Nearly six in 10 (58 per cent) say keeping on top of regulatory change is stressful. A third of stressed landlords (33 per cent) are considering selling their property because of it and a further 26 per cent are having to take time off work. One in five (22 per cent) have had sleepless nights, while the same proportion have experienced long-term mental health issues due to the stress.

When asked what they would find most helpful in reducing stress levels, one in five (20 per cent) said employing a managing agent to oversee these issues on their behalf would help, while 19 per cent mentioned having knowledgeable friends and family members to assist when needed. One in six (16 per cent) would like regulatory updates emailed to them by a third party in newsletter format, while one in 10 (12 per cent) would like access to a legal documents service providing helpful guides, templates, tools, and tutorials. More than seven in 10 (73 per cent) would like more support from insurers specifically when it comes to understanding regulatory change.

However, some landlords are taking proactive steps to monitor the regulatory landscape and are using a variety of methods to ensure they’re fully up to speed. Of those who feel on top of these issues (67 per cent), one in three (33 per cent) carry out their own research, 31 per cent pay a letting agent to help keep them up to date, 22 per cent read landlord trade publications and newsletters, and 18 per cent receive advice from a lawyer.

Jamie Chaplin, Landlord Business Manager, Direct Line business insurance:

“Landlords are faced with a range of challenging regulatory changes and issues and our research suggests this is causing them a range of problems. In some cases, this is causing stress and anxiety, which is leading many to consider selling their properties.

“However, there are many ways landlords can find advice and support. Direct Line landlord policies come with a Legal Advice Helpline which provides landlords with unlimited access to a team of legal advisors, who are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, all year round in England and Wales. The helpline offers confidential legal advice and access to a library of legal templates, tools and regulatory guides to help landlords stay compliant with changing laws and regulations.”

For more information on Direct Line’s legal advice for landlords, please visit:

For more information on Direct Line’s landlord insurance offerings, please visit:


1) Opinium survey of 2,000 UK adults conducted 11-15th February 2022, 222 of whom were landlords.

For further information please contact:          

Direct Line Group
Unni Henry
Marketing Practitioner 
Email: [email protected]

About Direct Line business insurance

Launched in 2007 Direct Line business insurance now has over half a million customer policies, providing a flexible range of insurance products for the landlord, van and small business sectors.

Direct Line business insurance policies are underwritten by U K Insurance Limited, Registered office: The Wharf, Neville Street, Leeds LS1 4AZ. Registered in England and Wales No 1179980. U K Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.

Direct Line business insurance and U K Insurance limited are both part of Direct Line Insurance Group plc.

Customers can find out more about Direct Line business insurance products or get a quote by calling 0345 301 4827 or visiting