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Number of middle-aged renters doubles in a decade

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The number of middle-aged renters has doubled in the last decade, data shows, with concerns raised about the economic and social impact of these tenants in future years.

With rising UK house prices leaving many middle-age workers unable to afford a first home, or those forced to rent after a relationship break-up, analysts say a focus on young first-time buyers means older tenants, often with children, risk being ignored. 

The study highlights:

  • 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;
  • there is a noticeable increase in renting among 45 to 50-year-olds, sometimes as a result of debt, death, or divorce;
  • that debt charities are concerned about single parents with children who rent.

Property market analyst Richard Donnell, who analysed the data for BBC News, pointed to the potential strain on the benefits system in 15 to 20 years' time when some of these renters will require financial assistance to help pay the rent during their retirement.

The news story cites two later life renters, one who feels a stigma attached to being a renter while the other feeling a sense of freedom. You can read the full story here: