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Home ownership amongst young people up after a decade of decline

The proportion of 25 to 34 year olds who own their own home in England has risen for the first time in over a decade.

There are now as many owner occupiers in this age range as there are private renters according to the government’s annual English Housing Survey.

It shows that in 2018-19, some 41 per cent of 25-34 year olds lived in the private rented sector and a further 41 per cent were owner occupiers.

The reverses the trend recorded each year between 2003-04 and 2013-14 during which the proportion of 25 to 34 year olds in owner occupation plummeted from 59 per cent to 36 per cent.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick says of the figures: “We’re doing everything we can to make the dream of home ownership a reality for more people, and it’s great to see this is happening for more young people who have taken that first step onto the housing ladder. We’re continuing to work to improve standards in the private rented sector, making buying a home more affordable and building homes fit for the future.”

Meanwhile, the proportion of 25 to 34 year olds in the private rented sector has dropped from its 2013-14 high of 48 per cent to 41 per cent in 2018-19. However, overcrowding has doubled over the last 20 years in the private rental sector and has hit a record high in the social housing sector.

Better news is that the average length that a private sector tenant lived in their current rental property was 4.4 years, up from 4.1 years in 2017-18.  This is the highest average length of time tenants were staying in their current homes over the last decade.

The policy manager of the Residential Landlords’ Association, John Stewart, says: “The vast majority of landlords who do a good job welcome good tenants staying in their properties long-term and today’s figures bear this out. They clearly refute the picture some create that landlords spend all their time looking for ways to evict their tenants and it is time to end this scaremongering.

“The market is meeting the ever changing demands on it without the need for legislation. It is vital that the government continues to support and encourage this with pro-growth policies that support good landlords to provide the long-term homes to rent to meet ever growing demand.”