Census shows homeownership drop

11 December 2012

Mother with her baby outside their front door

Census data from the Office of National Statistics shows that homeownership has fallen for the first time since records began 60 years ago.

Since 2001, homeownership overall has fallen by seven per cent, while the proportion of homes owned with a mortgage has dropped by 15 per cent.

The historic shift reflects the growing trend in young people and families who are unable to get a foot on the property ladder.

Rising numbers are being pushed into the country’s rapidly expanding private rental market. The proportion of homes rented privately has rocketed by 69 per cent since 2001.

See the latest figures for your area 

If current trends continue, the next generation will be bringing up their families in insecure rented housing or at home with their parents. A recent YouGov poll for Shelter revealed that 44 per cent of Britons believe their children or future children won’t be able to afford a decent home.

Shelter’s chief executive, Campbell Robb, said: ‘These figures confirm that homeownership is slipping further and further out of reach, no matter how hard people work or save.

‘This means young people are living at home well into their thirties, desperate to get on in life but unable to afford a place of their own.

Meanwhile, more young families are stuck in rented housing under constant threat of being evicted, worrying about whether they’ll have to move again’.

Mr Robb continued: ‘Today’s broken housing market isn’t the result of the credit crunch or mortgage lending, but decades of underinvestment in building the affordable homes we need. The Government has got to get a grip on this situation now, otherwise the chances of the next generation getting an affordable home look increasingly bleak.’

See Census data for your area on our interactive map 

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