According to Eurostat, the European Commission’s official statistics bureau, home ownership in Britain fell from a high of 73.3% in 2007 to 64.6% in 2013. This puts Britain well below the European average of 70%. Although just released, the data doesn’t include the numbers for 2014. Some analysts have speculated that the proportion of British owner-occupiers will have fallen further in the last year.
According to separate data from the Department for Communities and Local Government, home ownership hasn’t been this low since 1988.
Eurostat’s data also suggests that, out of the 2.9m homes constructed in the UK between 2000 and 2012, more than 8 in 10 (2.5m) went to the private rented sector. This dramatic change in the housing market has been attributed to it being easier to secure finances for buy-to-let borrowers than for owner-occupiers.
It has been forecast that, based on current trends, in just two decades over 50% of Britons will be renting for the first time since the early 1970s.