Will ‘Generation Rent’ ever own homes?

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THE majority of young people believe they have no hope of getting a foot on the property ladder, according to a recent survey by the Halifax.

The survey, found that two thirds of young non-homeowners – dubbed Generation Rent – thought they had no realistic prospect of ever owning their own home.

We asked people in Winslow for their views.

Retired lecturer Bob Hutley, aged 72, from Winslow, said: “I’d hate to be just getting married now. Before we married, we bought a house in 1961 for £1,800. There was no problem then if you put your mind to it. But I should think it’s virtually impossible for youngsters these days, unless they’re bankers or something.”

Housewife Ana Bowden, aged 39, from North Marston, has two daughters, aged eight and six.

She said: “I feel for my children in 20 years’ time, that it will be a struggle for them to get on the housing market without considerable help from us.

“We’re really fortunate to be mortgage-free. But it’s the future generation. What with school fees and university fees as well, now it’s even more difficult.”

Housewife Louise Wetherall, aged 38, from Winslow, is mum to two children aged three and five.

She said: “We do worry because we’re not able to save for our future, let alone theirs. It is a concern, especially when you take into account the cost of university.

“You used to expect to be able to buy a house but I think people are giving up on that now.

Bookseller Christopher Corbett, aged 65, from Winslow, said: “My daughter is at uni studying to be a nurse, which is a fairly low-paid job. Without help from her parents, she’d find it hard to buy a house. Anyone on a low wage would find it very hard.

“People are expected to save, but youngsters are going to be spending most of their income on rent, which will give them little chance to save.”

Chartered surveyor Duncan Wigley, aged 57, from Winslow, said: “When the likes of us started out, it was quite hard to get a mortgage. Then it got far too easy, but now it’s gone back too far – they’re asking people to find 25 per cent and it’s not possible.

“I’ve been advocating for a long time that mortgage periods should be a lot longer. It spreads the pain.”

Retired pilot John Ahern, aged 62, from Great Horwood, who has children aged 23, 31 and 34, said: “I must say I’m concerned.

“If I was a young person, I don’t think I’d want to be on the property ladder at the moment.

“It’s not just the prospect of getting a mortgage or the high deposits they need. House prices are expected to fall in the medium term. If my son buys with a 95 per cent mortgage and house prices fall, he’s left with negative equity straight away.”