4 In 10 Young People Are Now Paying Unaffordable Rent

Photographed by Meg O'Donnell
People under 30 are spending more of their income on rent than any other age group, according to new data.
An extensive new study from Dataloft, an agency that analyses the housing market, found that four in ten young people are now spending more than 30% of their pay on rent.
According to the BBC, with whom Dataloft shared their data based on responses from 150,000 young people, experts warn that this level of spending on rent is unaffordable.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in October that the average person or household in the UK could expect to spend 23% of their pay on rent. It also re-iterated that spending anything over 30% is not considered "affordable".
Nick Gallent, a professor of housing and planning at University College London, described the current situation for young renters as "horrendous", particularly as the cost of living crisis escalates.
He said: "Despite all the economic problems, house prices and rents continue to nudge upwards."
Earlier this month London's Mayor, Sadiq Khan, called on the government to grant him powers to impose a rent freeze in the capital. "Rents are soaring while landlords profit," he said. "With the cost of living crisis raging, this is more urgent than ever."
Khan has repeatedly asked the government for rent-freezing powers since 2019. Meanwhile, housing reform campaigners are urging the government to include rent caps which could be used across the country in its Renter's Reform Bill White Bill.
Anny Cullum, a policy officer at housing campaign group ACORN, told Sky News: "There’s some really good things in the current Renter’s Reform Bill White Bill, for example ending Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions, which will mean tenants aren’t being kicked out of their homes for no reason. But it doesn’t go anywhere near far enough on affordability.
"What we want to see is caps and rent controls put in," Cullum added. "We can’t rely on landlords to regulate themselves - at the end of the day they are businesspeople, and they’ll take advantage of opportunities to make as much profit as they can."