• Kevin Murphy

UK Home Renters On The Rise

Results of a recent survey by the Department for Work and Pensions' Family Resources shows that the number of adults who are now home renters in the UK has doubled over the past decade.

A third of homeowners in the survey states that they would be unable to afford their home at todays market prices.

Reasons vary but people between the age of 30 and 54 are becoming more likely to rent private homes from landlords as a result of rising property prices.

For those mainly over 45 reasons include include death, debt or divorce. Families now having to rent has risen 119% over the past ten years with special concerns by debt charities for children and single parents. BBC reports that :

“...many middle-aged workers were unable to afford a first home; others affected were "accidental renters" caused by a relationship break-up.’

Paula Higgins, chief executive of the Homeowners' Alliance, in The Independent said:

"People are stretched to the limit and have insecure wages. When they split up, a couple can't each buy a property in the same area that lets them share the children.”

"The danger of all of this is the social inequality it will create between the haves - who are homeowners - and the have nots."

From 2007 to April 2017 the analysis shows that renters has increased across all age groups. Additionally the proportion of homeowners with mortgages has declined among the working population.

SpareRoom reports a five-fold of increase since 2008 of users on its website in the 35 to 54 age group and a 1000% by people over 65 looking to rent residential property.

Matt Hutchinson, director of SpareRoom, told The Independent:

"Renting, particularly flat sharing, is often seen as a young person's game. But that's all changing. Despite a slowdown in house prices, owning a property is still far beyond the reach of many.’

"As a result we're seeing the rise of the lifetime renter, but also a trend of older flatmates sharing for the first time in years, or potentially for the first time ever, in their 40s and 50s.”

In a 2017 report Knight Frank predicts that close to one in four homes will be rented:

“...privately by the end of 2021 as soaring house prices and stagnant wages put home ownership out of the reach of growing numbers of people.”

Almost 5 million households or 21% of all homes are privately rented with a quarter of number being families with children.

Knight Frank expects that the figures will rise to almost 5.79 million within the next five years with 14.3 million owner occupiers and 4.3 million social tenants.

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