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Rent begins at 40

The number of middle-aged people who rent has doubled in a decade, according to new figures from the Department for Work and Pensions.

Its Family Resources Survey shows that forty-somethings are almost twice as likely to be renting from a private landlord as they were a decade ago.

The uplift comes as house prices continue to increase and outstrip salaries, leaving some people unable to afford a first property or as ‘accidental’ renters after a relationship break-up.

Other findings showed that renting among all ages is more likely to be from a private landlord than from a council or housing association.

According to the Family Resources Survey:


20% of UK households were renting privately by 2017

28% own with a mortgage

34% own their home outright

17% were in the social renting sector


Nearly half of 25 to 34-year-olds rented their home privately by 2017, according to the survey.

The largest increase over the 10 years during and after the financial crisis was for the 35 to 44-year-old age group. The proportion of private renters in this age group doubled from 13% to 26%.

The proportion of 45 to 54-year-olds renting from a private landlord rose from 8% to 14% over the same period.

Opening Doors aims to encourage good quality housing of all kinds for rent and purchase – including people of all ages and backgrounds.

By signing the Home Ownership Register, people who wish to buy and rent can help our councils better gauge housing needs locally – and encourage the right kind of housing for the area.