Home ownership in England hits 30 year low

PUBLISHED: 08:55 04 August 2016 | UPDATED: 08:55 04 August 2016

For many people in England, home ownership feels an increasingly unrealistic prospect

For many people in England, home ownership feels an increasingly unrealistic prospect


The number of people who own their own home has fallen to its lowest level in three decades.

A growing gap between property prices and earnings has resulted in a housing crisis, with many being forced to rent.

And it’s not just a feature of the London property market, but reflective of other cities including Manchester, parts of Yorkshire and the West Midlands.

Home ownership figures peaked in April 2003, when 71 per cent of households owned their own property – outright or with a mortgage. But by February this year, that number had dropped to 64 per cent, according to the Resolution Foundation think-tank.

It is the lowest since 1986, when a housing boom was sparked by the deregulation of the mortgage industry, coupled with the right-to-buy policy of Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government.

The findings of the recent study show just how tricky it will be for Prime Minister Theresa May – who has pledged to tackle the housing deficit - to turn things around.

The report was based on analysis of the latest Labour Force Survey and revealed that early this year, just 58 per cent of households in Greater Manchester were homeowners, compared with a peak of 72 per cent in 2003.

In outer London, 58 per cent were homeowners this February compared with a peak of 72 per cent in 2000.

Stephen Clarke, policy analyst at the Resolution Foundation, said: “London has a well-known and fully blown housing crisis but the struggle to buy a home is just as big a problem in cities across the north of England.”

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