A nation of permanent renters?
By Emma Martin, 03 August 2017
New research from London rental firm Urban Collective has found that just 29.5% of renters in the UK intend on ever owning a home, and over half believe that property ownership will be reserved for those with a high NET worth in 15 years’ time.
The study confirms recent concerns that homeownership is becoming more and more of a distant dream for renters as prices continue to rise, and wage gaps increase. This is something that has been highlighted previously in The English Housing Survey which exposed just how significant the rise in renters is, with the number of tenants in the Private Rented Sector (PRS) having doubled in the last 16 years. This equates to a rise from 13.6% of all homes being privately rented in London in 2003/4 to 28.1% now.
More importantly though, the study revealed the sentiment behind this rise in life-long renters, and of the 2,000 renters interviewed 71% said that they would be unhappy with renting forever, and a shocking 84% saying the same in London.
Co-founder of The Urban Collective Mayank Mathur commented on the topic: “Fifteen years ago, renting was a stop gap until people could save enough to buy. Today, owning a home is a long-term goal and in 15 years’ time it might just be an impossible dream.
Whilst the news that it looks as if Britain will become a nation of permanent renters is good news for the lettings industry and landlords, the evidence that so many renters are unhappy with the idea of renting forever sends a stark message to the lettings industry that we must improve the renting experience for tenants.
Mathur goes on to say of the issue: “If we’re going to become a nation of ‘forever renters’ then clearly the experience has to improve. No wonder the thought of renting forever makes Brits so unhappy; to date the rental market has been lagging behind the customer service found in other industries and geared towards serving landlords, not the tenants.”
While we can expect the rental market to continue flourishing as more and more UK adults look towards renting as a long term solution to rising house prices, it is now in the hands of landlords and lettings agents to make sure the rental experience is as positive as possible.
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