According to government figures released in the department for Communities and Local Government’s English housing, the proportion of people living in the private rented sector rose again last year.
The survey shows that 17% of households (3.62 million) lived in the private rented sector in 2010/11, an increase from 2.45 million in 2005.
In contrast the number of owner occupied households has decreased from 14.79 million in 2005 to 14.45 million in 2010/11. Despite this, however, owner-occupation continues to be the largest tenure type, accounting for 66% of households.
Chief executive of Shelter, Campbell Robb, said: “What we’re seeing now is that renting is becoming the ‘new normal’ for a much wider group of people, with over a million families now renting their home from a landlord. This means that increasing numbers of children are growing up stuck on a merry-go-round of home after home, without the stability their own parents enjoyed when they were young.”
Campbell Robb added: “Renters in this country get a tough deal, struggling with expensive rents while living with the knowledge that they can lose their home at any time with just two months notice. It’s time that Government realised that renting is the only option for more and more families every year.”
The figures also showed London had the lowest proportion of owner occupiers at 51% but the highest proportion of private renters at 25%. The proportion of social renters in England was 17 %. The percentage of social renters was highest in London and the North East, with both at 24 %.