Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Chart of the Day
29 July 2022

How the rise of buy-to-let landlords fuelled the housing crisis

First-time buyers have been priced out of the housing market by wealthier people.

By Nicu Calcea

In the 20 years from 2000, the proportion of people owning two or more homes more than doubled, according to analysis by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

At the same time, the proportion of people aged 16-34 who own their own homes fell from 36 per cent to 21 per cent. “The fall in home ownership against a backdrop of multiple home ownership has, in part, been facilitated by the structure of mortgage market regulations, which have led banks to view buy-to-let landlords as less risky,” said the foundation, which works to fight poverty. 

While landlords have found it relatively easy to borrow, first-time buyers are finding it increasingly difficult. A recent Resolution Foundation survey found that two thirds (67 per cent) of people aged 25-34 who didn't expect to be able to buy said the cost of saving for a deposit was the primary barrier to home ownership.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation suggests that in addition to more homes being built, the private rental sector needs to be reduced in favour of first-time buyers and social renters. “We must place a much greater focus on the 25 million homes we already occupy, both to address the cost of housing and to explore the strategies, levers and policies which can be utilised to rapidly shift who they are owned by and in whose interests,” the report concluded.

[See also: UK set for slowest economic growth in the G7 next year]

Select and enter your email address Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Your guide to the best writing across politics, ideas, books and culture - both in the New Statesman and from elsewhere - sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.

Content from our partners
A better future starts at home
How to create an inclusive workplace and embrace neurodiversity
Universal Credit falls short of covering the bare essentials. That needs to change

Topics in this article : ,