And unlike their younger counterparts, 46% are happy to live in a rented home, according to Your Move.
What’s the latest?
Nearly half of renters are aged over 46, with many no longer aspiring to own their own property.
In what has been dubbed the ‘rise of the silver renter’, around 18% of the UK’s 4.5 million private renters are aged over 55, while a further 22% are aged between 46 to 55.
Why is this happening?
The rise in people divorcing in later life is thought to be the main reason behind the high number of older renters.
High house prices mean that once couples have split the proceeds from selling their family home, they may not be able to afford to buy their own place.
Affordability issues may also mean people are waiting longer before they get on to the housing ladder.
Above: three-bedroom cottage to rent on Coalecroft Road, Putney, London.
Who does it affect?
While renting is typically associated with young people starting out in life, the research found that only 39% of renters in the private sector are aged under 35.
But with renting an increasingly popular option among older consumers, landlords are likely to have to pay attention to the different needs of this group of consumers.
Valerie Bannister, head of lettings at Your Move, said: “Now more than ever, it is important that this sector offers good quality, well managed properties that allow tenants to feel at home in them.”
Sounds interesting. What’s the background?
Your Move predicts the number of private renters will jump from 4.5 million now to 6 million over the coming few years.
But renters fall into two distinct camps: those who are happy to rent and those who want to buy a property.
Only 25% of 18 to 25 year olds said they were satisfied renting, with 80% wanting to own a home in future.
This compared with 46% of the over 55s who said they were happy, with just 19% wanting to get on the property ladder.
But high house prices are making it increasingly difficult or those who want to buy a property to be able to do so.
Bannister said: “The private rental sector needs to answer this issue by becoming a first choice tenure, and not just the second best option.
“If the flexibility of renting can be combined with the stability and reassurance of longer residencies, and fewer restrictions around making the space ‘feel like home’, for many, renting would be considered a better long-term, as well as short-term, option.”
Top 3 takeaways
- Nearly half of people renting homes in the private sector are aged over 46.
- Around 18% of the UK’s 4.5 million private renters are aged over 55, while a further 22% are aged between 46 to 55.
- The majority of older renters do not want to get on to the property ladder.
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