Major shift to renting across several English cities

Home ownership in England has fallen to its lowest level for 30 years, according to new analysis from thinktank the Resolution Foundation.

Having peaked at 71% in 2003, the proportion of people owning their own home slumped to 64% by February this year. Doube digit falls were seen not just in London, but also in Greater Manchester, South and West Yorkshire and in the West Midlands metropolitan area.

Meanwhile, the proportion of private renters in England near doubled to 19%, up from 11%.

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.

“The chances of owning a home have fallen fastest in Greater Manchester over the last decade, though the Leeds and Sheffield city areas have also experienced sharp drops.

“These drops are more than a simple source of frustration for the millions of people who aspire to own their home. The shift to renting privately can reduce current living standards and future wealth, with implications for individuals and the state.

“We cannot allow other cities to edge towards the kind of housing crisis that London has been saddled with. It’s encouraging that the new Prime Minister has talked about tackling the housing deficit. She may find that making good on this promise could secure as important a legacy as negotiating a successful exit from the European Union.”