A third of millennials could still be renting in retirement

Galtero Lara
Abril 17, 2018

Generations of young people in the United Kingdom face never being able to own their own home and instead renting a property for the whole of their lives, according to a think tank report.

The Foundation said radical reform is needed to make the private rental sector fit for raising children and retirement "because a generation of young people face the prospect of never owning their own home". However, it also warns that policy makers can not afford to neglect a crucial part of Britain's "here and now" housing crisis - poor quality and insecurity in the private rented sector (PRS).

In a report published by the Resolution Foundation for its Intergenerational Commission, it said policy has failed to catch up with the fact that bringing up children in the private rental sector has become mainstream.

The Foundation argues that more should be done to build homes and support young people's home ownership aspirations. Private renting has grown rapidly in recent decades.

And if current trends in home ownership continue, up to half of that generation - born between 1981 and 2000 - face the prospect of renting in their 40s.

Some four in 10 millennials - those born between the early 1980s and mid-1990s - still live in rented accommodation at age 30, which is more than double the rate of the previous generation and four times that of baby-boomers when they were the same age.

A record 1.8 million families with children now rent privately - up threefold from 600,000 just 15 years ago.

Lindsay Judge, senior policy analyst at the Resolution Foundation, said: "Britain's housing problems have developed into a full-blown crisis over recent decades and young people are bearing the brunt".

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The Foundation said, to give tenants longer-term stability in their homes, indeterminate tenancies should be introduced as the sole form of contract in England and Wales, following Scotland's lead.

A third of millennials could still be renting by the time they retire, a report has warned.

Ms Judge adds: "We have to improve conditions for the millions of families living in private rented accommodation".

To keep rents stable, rent rises should be limited to the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) measure of inflation over three-year periods, the report said. That means raising standards and reducing the risks associating with renting through tenancy reform and light touch rent stabilisation, ' she explained. A specialist tribunal was also set up, providing a route for landlords and tenants to settle disputes.

Scottish Labour's housing spokeswoman, Pauline McNeill, said the new report "will come as no surprise to the thousands of young people unable to get a foot on the housing ladder".

"For any housing strategy to be relevant and effective for people of all ages, it must include this combination of support for renters, first time buyers and ultimately a level of housebuilding that matches what the country needs".

'But we're also helping to ensure that everyone has a safe and decent home by giving councils stronger powers to crack down on bad landlords and consulting on stronger protections for tenants themselves'.

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