In the UK, buying a house has long been seen as a mark of economic progress, a proud milestone to celebrate with friends and family. But with house prices rising rapidly, it is becoming more and more difficult for young people to save for a deposit. With this in mind, should we start being less negative about renting?
In other developed countries, the attitude towards renting is completely different. In Germany, arguably the most successful economy in Europe, only 52% of the population own their own home (In comparison to around 66% in the UK). The percentage of home owners in both Austria and Denmark is similarly low. Like Germany, purchasing property just isn’t seen as a display of economic success in these countries. It isn’t just attitude which makes renting a more attractive option on the continent; there are more long, secure tenancies on offer, much more reasonable prices and less sharp price hikes.
So is it time for attitudes to change here in the UK? With young people between 18 and 34 being coined “generation rent” it looks like we are all going to have to get used to renting for longer – and anyway, is that so bad? After all, with generation rent more likely to move for university or a job, renting offers the no commitment, flexible living that is needed. With other benefits such as little to no maintenance costs and less monitory risk and then buying, it’s not all bad.
So let’s be less negative about renting, and embrace this more flexible way of living!
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