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Total rent paid in UK falls £5.1bn in three years

Joanna Faith
Written By:
Joanna Faith

The total amount of rent paid by tenants in the UK has fallen by 8 per cent over the last three years.

Tenants in 2021 spend £57.3bn on rent, down from £62.4bn in 2018.

Fewer millennials – those born between 1980 and 1996 – renting has sparked the fall in the total amount of rent paid nationally, according to Hamptons.

The millennial rent bill has fallen by 28 per cent from a peak of £33.3bn in 2017 down to £24bn this year.

Millennials currently account for 42 per cent of all rent paid in the UK down from a peak of 55 per cent in 2016.

Hamptons said if current trends continue, millennials could be paying the same amount of rent as Generation Z (those born between 1997-2012) within five years.

Meanwhile, Generation Z’s bid to fly the nest has gathered pace.  Their total rent bill doubled from £1.8bn to £3.6bn between 2020 and 2021. This figure is likely to double again next year.

However, the total amount of rent they pay is increasing at a slower rate than the millennial rent bill ever did.  Covid-19 is likely to have worsened this, with more would-be first-time renters staying at home with parents during the pandemic.

Aneisha Beveridge, head of research at Hamptons, said: “With fewer millennials renting, the overall amount of rent being paid is falling too.  In previous years when the number of renters was growing, this figure would have been pushed back up by the next generation flying the nest.  But Generation Z’s bill is growing more slowly than millennials’ ever did when they left home.

“While Covid is likely to have prevented many would-be first-time renters moving out of their parents’ home, mortgages for those with small deposits are far more widely available than they were in the five years after 2007.  This has meant that more Generation Z’s are likely to jump the renting stage and become homeowners, as opposed to millennials who have had to rent for much longer.”