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Majority of tenants are happy renting rather than owning a home

Three quarters of tenants in the private rented sector in the UK are happy to rent, and a third of those are happy to rent forever, according to new research.

The study from buy to let marketplace lender Landbay also found that men are more likely to be happy renting forever at 36% compared to 31% of women.

For those aged 55 and over, some 64% are also happy to remain tenants, versus less than a third of 35 to 54 year olds, who are more likely to want to own a home. Londoners also hanker more than most to own their own home with just 17% happy to stay renting, compared to 46% of Welsh tenants.

Of those who aim to buy a property, the average length of time tenants are prepared to wait is 4.1 years, with men content to wait 4.6 years and women 3.8 years.

The top reason for renting is not wanting to or being able to make the financial commitment of buying a home at 46%, followed by 40% liking having fewer responsibilities than an owner and 33% wanting the flexibility of renting.

‘Renting affords significantly greater flexibility than home ownership and, at a time when house price growth is uncertain, remains the best option for a significant number of people,’ said John Goodall, chief executive officer of Landbay.

‘It’s clear from this data that those who choose to rent are happy doing so, and indeed would like to continue doing so forever. The financial hurdle of home ownership is for many too great a stretch and frankly they don’t want to make the commitment,’ he pointed out.

‘The reality is owning a home isn’t the right choice for many, which is why the private rental sector needs to be supported properly if we are to house this growing portion of private sector tenants,’ he added.