Numbers of private tenants double as home ownership drops

Census figures newly released show that the number of private tenants has doubled, while the proportion who own a home has fallen sharply.

The figures from the Office of National Statistics show that one in five families in England – equivalent to 1.2 million households – was renting from a private landlord in 2011, a number that has doubled since 2001.

Over the same period, the proportion of families who own their home dropped by 13%.

The 2011 Census results show that 1,204,830 households in England with dependent children were renting privately. In the 2001 Census, the figure stood at 604,228.

The Census also showed that the proportion of households with dependent children renting privately in England in 2011 was 19%. In 2001 this was 10%.

The proportion of households with dependent children that own their home, either outright or with a mortgage, in England was 60% in 2011. In 2001 this figure stood at 68%, a proportionate decrease of 13%.

Households with dependent children made up 32% of all private rented households in 2011, compared to 25% in the 2001 Census.
Shelter called on the Government to build more affordable homes, saying that if it did not do so, more families would be “forced to bring up their children in unstable private rented homes”.
Campbell Robb, Shelter’s chief executive, said: “These figures show that renting is no longer the preserve of the young and the mobile. More and more families are joining the ranks of ‘generation rent’ because they are priced out of a home of their own.
“Despite working hard and saving each month, the reality is that home ownership has become a distant dream for many, leaving more families to bring up their children in short-term lets that don’t provide the stability they need.”
“The Government’s Spending Review has failed priced-out families by continuing decades of under-investment in building the homes we need.

“Unless this changes, tomorrow’s young people and families will find it even harder to find an affordable home and get on in life.”