The Rise of the 50+ Renter
By |Published On: 18th October 2015|

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The Rise of the 50+ Renter

By |Published On: 18th October 2015|

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

We’re all aware of the housing crisis, that it is affecting Londoners the most, and that generation rent is still struggling to get onto the property ladder. But how many are aware that those over 50-years-old are also suffering?

A quarter of those aged between 50-64 live in rental accommodation, according to the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) report on homeownership and renting in England and Wales.

The Rise of the 50+ Renter

The Rise of the 50+ Renter

Furthermore, flatsharing website has found that in the last five years, the amount of 55-64-year-olds living in flatshares has increased by 343%. In the over 65s category, there has been a surge of 600%.

The site revealed that around one in ten flatsharers using the service are over 45, taking the average user age to almost 29-years-old.

Director of SpareRoom, Matt Hutchinson, says this trend is becoming increasingly common: “Whether we like it or not, we’re being forced to rethink our aspirations of homeownership as Britain moves towards becoming a nation of renters.

“Property prices are already out of reach for many first time buyers and increasingly, we’re seeing older renters opt for house and flatshares over renting solo in one-bed flats.”1

And things don’t appear to be getting any better. Around 45% of people who are currently renting fear that they will never be able to afford their own home, according to data from the Post Office. One in four revealed that they don’t think they will be able to save for a deposit on their current wage, while a further 17% believe they won’t be able to meet monthly mortgage repayments.

As a consequence, the average first time buyer age is rising.

Head of Mortgages at Post Office Money, John Willcock says that the market is moving further out of reach for hopeful first time buyers: “The average age at which non-homeowners expect to get a foot on the property ladder has increased to 36 over the past year, which is a worrying trend.

“It is clear that there is still a long way to go to inspire confidence in the first time buyers’ market, with nine million feeling they won’t ever be able to buy their own property.”

As private tenants spend around 50% of their monthly income on rent, Willcock adds that saving a deposit is the “biggest hurdle”1 for prospective buyers.

Housing crisis commentators believe that student loans are a growing problem, stating that it is not fair or feasible to expect graduates to save for a home while paying off their debt.

And despite schemes that support homeownership, such as Help to Buy, most have a maximum age limit, meaning many affected by the housing crisis are still stuck in flatshares.


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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