The young are no longer alone in generation rent
As divorce rates soar and housing prices rise, an increasing number of over-50s are finding themselves stuck in rented accommodation with no way out.
One of the most discussed subjects in relation to property is the difficulty in raising the necessary funds to purchase a house, and whenever the topic is debated it is almost always used to describe the British youth and the growing disparity between their wages and the nation’s house prices. New figures released by Saga Insurance, however, claim that generation rent is not just a problem for the young anymore, as the number of people aged over 50 who rent as opposed to own has risen dramatically.
In June 2016, more than a third of over-50s are renting their home, a figure that has increased by 25% since 2011. For many in the age bracket, it is a result of never having been in a position to purchase a property due to low wages and ever increasing prices, but Saga believes the majority of renters over 50 have been forced in the situation due to increased divorce rates.
Referred to as ‘silver-splitters’, couples who have previously owned their homes, but are selling due to separation, are finding their individual wealth is not vast enough to allow for a deposit in today’s housing market.
In a similar fashion to younger generations, property selling experts have found that older Brits are opening themselves up to the option of house-sharing in order to keep a roof over their heads, but with limited employability and diminished hopes of being offered mortgages by lenders, the older members of generation rent are finding themselves in a worse position than the youth of today.
Even more worrying is that 59% of renters over 50 do not even have home insurance for their possessions, with many believing incorrectly that it is the landlord’s responsibility for replacing damaged assets, meaning an unforeseen accident could wipe out any wealth the renter may have left.
Traditionally, those in their 50s have always been in a strong position financially versus younger generations thanks to years of investments and career advancements, but as more age groups find themselves struggling to buy, vendors looking for a quick house sale will find it harder and harder to sell their home without losing money. They can of course opt to use property buying companies who buy any home in any condition for cash at competitive rates, while those choosing to go the traditional route using estate agents face an uncertain future.
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