DECADES of falling housebuilding has been blamed for new figures that show millennials face paying £44,000 more on rent by the time they turn 30 than the baby boomer generation.
A new report by the Resolution Foundation said rising costs in the private rented sector and lower rates of home ownership have fuelled the increase.
Under 35s also face paying around £25,000 more on rent by the time they hit 30 than the generation immediately above them - dubbed ‘generation X’.
Of that cohort - those aged 35 to 50 - around 60 per cent had climbed onto the property ladder by the time they reached 30, compared with just 42 per cent of millennials. Close to two-thirds of baby boomers, those aged over 50 and up to 70, owned a home by the age of 30.
It said: “Decades of falling housebuilding and rising house prices have reduced home ownership for subsequent generations.”
For 35-year-old renter Mark Wride, who works in social services, the fascination with owning a home remains “odd” and he has no real desire to buy.
Mr Wride, of Brandesburton in the East Riding, said: “Fifty years ago we were born and died in the same place, now people travel all over the country working or not worrying about the ownership aspect of the housing market.
“I live on my own at the moment, but I’d like to possibly live with my partner at some point, and renting does make that easier even if the prices are high.”
The report, which looked at data from the Office for National Statistics and Halifax, said that the extra money spent on renting had reduced young people’s living standards and made it harder to save to buy a home of their own.
The £44,000 extra typically spent on rent by millennials eclipses the £33,000 average deposit that a first-time buyer needs to get on the property ladder today, the report found.
Jamie Potter, 29, said he spends a “significant proportion” of his income on rent and bills, leaving him in no position to save.
He would like to buy in around four years time, but fears he’ll be “five steps behind” without having built up a hefty deposit.
Mr Potter, a theatre marketing officer from Hull, said: “Many people are just trying to get by day-to-day, thinking about long term things like buying houses just doesn’t figure. I’d be happy to continue renting if there was more quality housing to rent, at lower rates, with more scrupulous landlords and secure tenancies.”
The Resolution Foundation released the report ahead of the launch of an 18-month investigation into how young people’s living standards have been “permanently scarred”.
Senior policy analyst Laura Gardiner said: “The nation’s housing crisis is perhaps the most visible example of growing inequality between generations.
“Britain’s continuing failure to build enough homes means that unless we change course the struggle of young people to own their home is only going to get worse.”
A spokesperson for the Department of Communities and Local Government said: “This Government is committed to creating a bigger, better private rented sector, which meets the needs of both tenants and landlords. That’s why we’ve set out the most ambitious vision for housing in a generation, including £3.5bn in Government-backed guarantees to attract more institutional investment into the sector.
“Furthermore, on average more than 140 people a day have been helped into homeownership through government-backed schemes since 2010.”
Figures released this week show that for the first time in 20 years first-time buyers have borrowed more than home movers.