UK baby boomers facing housing crisis

UK baby boomers facing housing crisis
04/05/2018 , by , in INTERNATIONAL

ALMOST half a million baby boomers in Britain are forced to take “drastic measures” to cover their rent, in a sign that people over 50 are finding it increasingly harder to meet housing costs, researchers have found.

A survey by the National Housing Federation (NHF) said more than 40 per cent of private renters in England aged 50 or above had to borrow from their children, take out loans or cut down on food and heating to pay their rent last year.

Britain is experiencing a housing crisis as homebuilding has not kept pace with demand, driving up property prices, with rents rising faster than wages and homelessness soaring.

Baby boomers – or people born between the mid-1940s and mid-1960s – are often considered to be shielded from the effects as the majority of them own homes outright, the NFA, which represents housing associations and social landlords, said.

But over the past 10 years, British home ownership has changed.

A record 1.13 million people aged 50 and over are renting from private landlords now, compared to 651,000 a decade ago, and many are struggling with rising costs and without supportive adaptations, such as handrails and ramps, the NFA said.

At least 17 per cent of those surveyed had to cut down on food and heating, and about 10 per cent were forced to take out a loan, use an overdraft or a credit card to pay the rent, the survey published this week showed.

More than one in 10 private renters have borrowed money from family and friends, while 3 per cent have asked their children for financial help.

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