UK home ownership among worst in Europe

Only 63.5 per cent of British people owned their own homes in 2015

Harriet Agerholm
Monday 31 October 2016 21:52
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House prices rose in June but experts warn the Brexit vote is likely to hit the property market
House prices rose in June but experts warn the Brexit vote is likely to hit the property market

The rate people in the UK are able to buy their own homes is at the fourth lowest level in Europe, official new figures show.

According to the most recent figures compiled by EU statistics agency Eurostat, only Denmark, Austria and Germany – countries where the rental market is favoured – now have lower home ownership rates.

Home ownership reached a peak in April 2003, when 71 per cent of households owned their own homes. In 2015, 63.5 per cent did, down almost one per cent from 2014.

Across the EU overall, almost seven in ten people lived in owner-occupied homes.

In August a report by the Resolution Foundation found that home ownership had fallen to its lowest level in 30 years as the gap between earnings and property prices widened.

Germany, which has a renting culture, has the lowest rate in the EU with just over half (51.9 per cent) of people the home they live in.

The highest ownership rates were in eastern Europe including Romania, Croatia, Lithuania and Slovakia all around the 90 per cent mark.

With more demand for homes to rent in the UK, experts have predicted there will be a shortfall of 1.8 million homes by 2025.

Analysts say the problem is particularly acute for young people. The number of 25-to-34-year-olds owning their own home plunged has plunged about a third, or 334,000 since 2011.

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