The Housing Crisis: Could the Elderly be the key to Unlocking it?
By |Published On: 17th August 2018|

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The Housing Crisis: Could the Elderly be the key to Unlocking it?

By |Published On: 17th August 2018|

This article is an external press release originally published on the Landlord News website, which has now been migrated to the Just Landlords blog.

According to the third annual Retirement Confidence Index, (RCI) from McCarthy & Stone, the UK’s leading retirement housebuilder, with the prospect of owning a home experiencing a decline for those under the age of 30, it is suggested that the older generation have the answers, when it comes to the question of how the housing crisis can be resolved. In addition, they have the power to increase the chances of younger people getting on the property ladder.

Produced in conjunction with YouGov, the RCI found that 60% of people belonging to the younger generation believed that the UK required more ‘later homes’ for older people, not just ‘starter homes’ for first time buyers.

Moreover, the results revealed that 70% of pensioners equally felt that there should be more focus on improving the provision of suitable housing options for the older generation.

However, it’s not only the younger generation who have a desire to move…

While it is apparent that people belonging to the younger generation have an urgency to get their foot on the steps of the property ladder, older people share an equal desperation for downsizing.

McCarthy & Stone discovered that 35% of adults aged 65 and over would consider moving, representing 4.1 million pensioners.

But, too many of these people are part of “generation stuck”, those pensioners who want to downsize but find they are blocked by limited options. In addition, 22% of older people would also consider a specialist retirement property, equivalent to 2.6 million people.

Are ‘later homes’ assisting older people to downsize and free up housing?

From the results provided by McCarthy & Stone, it was discovered that those who were contemplating downsizing, to do so, would equate to more than 2 million two-bedroom homes being released into the market. This would also help release over £364 billion of housing equity, boosting the finances of those aged 65 and over.

The declining prospect of owning a home, however, means that younger people feel they need to rely on their parents for financial assistance or perhaps, their grandparents. To get on the property ladder, 51% claimed they would require financial support from family.

Chief Executive of McCarthy & Stone, Clive Fenton, commented:
“Both older and younger people see the benefits in providing better housing options for our ageing population. Millions of older people are looking for properties better suited to their needs, and young people are desperately trying to join the housing ladder.

By providing more suitable housing, such as bungalows, retirement housing or other well-designed accommodation for later life, we can address a big part of the housing crisis. We absolutely understand the Government’s focus on helping young people join the housing ladder, but if they are really serious about solving the housing crisis they have to recognise that helping older people to downsize to free up under-occupied property has to be a significant part of the solution.”

About the Author: Em Morley (she/they)

Em is the Content Marketing Manager for Just Landlords, with over five years of experience writing for insurance and property websites. Together with the knowledge and expertise of the Just Landlords underwriting team, Em aims to provide those in the property industry with helpful resources. When she’s not at her computer researching and writing property and insurance guides, you’ll find her exploring the British countryside, searching for geocaches.

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