Older people aged 40 and above are now almost twice as likely to be renting their home from a private landlord than 10 years ago, according to BBC research.
Analysis by Hometrack’s insight director Richard Donnell, who worked with the BBC on the research, says a focus on young first-time buyers means older tenants, often with children, risk being ignored by the private rental sector.
The research reveals:
- The proportion of 35 to 54-year-olds who live as private tenants has nearly doubled in 10 years since 2006-07;
- Renting among all age groups is now more likely to be from a private landlord than from a council or housing association;
- A particular increase in renting among 45 to 50-year-olds, sometimes as a result of death, debt or divorce;
- Single parents with children who rent are a major concern among debt charities.
Donnell says he is concerned at the potential strain on the benefits system in 15 to 20 years' time when some of these older tenants require financial assistance to pay the rent during retirement.