Survey shows London private rental levels well ahead of English average
The level of private renting in London is higher than the rest of England by a third, the latest English Housing Survey has revealed.
Whereas 30 per cent of households in London are privately rented, only 19 per cent are elsewhere in England. Indeed, in the capital renting privately is the most common mode of tenure, followed by 25 per cent outright ownership and 22 per cent with a mortgage. These modes of homeownership are more common than private renting (PRS) elsewhere.
Observing this difference, the Residential Landlords Association said the contrast means a "one-size-fits-all" approach to housing policy would be misguided.
It added: "While experiences of renting in the capital may receive widespread media coverage, with high demand for properties, creating national policies based on these experiences may negatively impact other PRS markets across the country."
Some wider trends offer landlords and letting agents a deeper insight into what is going on across the country.
Overall, homeownership remained static at 63 per cent. Having peaked at 71 per cent in 2003, the proportion of people owning their homes dropped until 2014 and has remained steady since then.
However, it is notable that the proportion of homeowners who own their house outright has risen as the baby boomers enjoy considerable security. By contrast, the number of people aged under 45 who are renting has risen markedly. In 2006-07 72 per cent of those aged 35-44 were owner-occupiers, but this figure dipped to 52 per cent in 2016-17. At the same time, the proportion of this age group renting privately leapt from 11 per cent to 29 per cent.
Significantly, over the same period the number of 35-44 year-olds in the social rented sector did not change, demonstrating that private renting has become the clear alternative for those who are unable to get on the housing ladder or do not wish to.
Among younger people, there was another major increase in private renting, from 27 per cent of 25-34 year-olds in 2006-07 to 46 per cent a decade later.
All this indicates a very clear trend towards more younger renters, one that will make very obvious where the main marketing focus should be for landlords and agents.