Home owner figures spark new building call

Over two thirds of families in Northumberland own their own home, new figures reveal.

Thursday, 13th May 2021, 12:21 pm
Updated Friday, 14th May 2021, 2:51 pm
New 'affordable' housing calls

Office for National Statistics data estimates that 68% of households in the county were owners-occupiers in 2019 – the latest available figures.

This was broadly in line with 2012 but more homeowners are living mortgage-free – 27.5% in 2019, compared to 24.7% seven years before.

The proportion of people living in privately rented accommodation in Northumberland rose from 14.4% in 2012 to 15%.

PricedOut, a campaign group for affordable house prices, said that, while older generations are paying off their mortgages and enjoying low housing costs, young people are trapped by expensive rents.

It’s director Anya Martin said: "Housing costs are the major driver of inequality between the generations, and it is damaging young peoples' futures.

"The main barrier to home ownership is that we have been failing to build enough homes in this country for decades, resulting in rising prices.”

Housing charity Shelter’s chief executive, Polly Neate, said: "Home ownership is totally out of reach as most private renters and anew generation of good-quality social housing would give many more the chance of a home they can actually afford to live in."

The Ministry of Housing said more than 243,000 homes were delivered last year – the most for over 30 years.

A spokesman said: "We are delivering the homes our communities need and helping through Government-backed schemes including Shared Ownership, Help to Buy and the new 95% mortgage guarantee scheme.

"We are investing over £12 billion in affordable housing over the next five years."