Saturday, March 07, 2015

Nowhere to call home?

There's a certain level of stigma attached to being a renter rather than a homeowner in the UK - especially when you're not an early-twentysomething but a 37-year-old father-of-one. But, Danny Dorling argues, there shouldn't be - it's not so long ago that renting was the norm, and it's fast becoming the norm once again, with homeownership merely a temporary blip.

That much is reassuring in a sense, even if people my age have been brought up to see buying a house as an essential rite of passage, not least so you have a potential source of income in later life. The chances of Jen and I being able to afford a house any time soon - particularly in this part of the country - are slim to none, so we're likely to remain renters into our forties.

What's needed, though, is - as Dorling suggests - governmental acknowledgement of this general seachange in the form of legislation that clamps down on ruthless and unscrupulous landlords and makes long-term renting a less potentially precarious and uncomfortable existence. With the Tories in power, though, and still apparently fixated on pushing "the dream of home ownership", the much-needed regulatory changes are sadly unlikely to be forthcoming.

(Thanks to Adam for the link.)

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