The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has published the latest findings from the English Housing Survey 2022-3.
The full report can be viewed here.
Private rented sector overview
The report shows that the private rented sector in England accounted for 19% of households in 2022-23, around 4.6 million households in total. This rate has remained roughly the same since 2013-14, which suggests supply has remained largely static despite rising demand. A recent national survey funded by the TDS Charitable Foundation, highlights the difficulties many tenants now face in securing and affording suitable housing.
How long do private renters stay?
The English Housing Survey shows the average number of years that tenants in the private rented sector had spent in their current home was 4.3 years. Private renters had lived at their current address for less time than people living in other tenures.
Indeed, in 2022-23, the majority of household moves occurred within, into or out of private rented dwellings.
Rent trends and affordability
The average rent for households in the private rented sector was £232 per week, compared with £111 in the social sector. The proportion of household income that private renters spent on their rent is 32%. Overall, 24% (1.1 million households) of private renters received housing support to help with the payment of their rent.
The report also showed that 59% of private renters said they expected to buy a property at some point in the future. Among these, 30% expected to do so in five to ten years.
Private renters had a higher average household size of 2.3 persons compared to owner occupiers and social renters. Significantly, the private rented sector was made up of a higher proportion of ethnic minority households.
Decent homes standard
In 2022, 3.7 million dwellings failed to meet the Decent Homes Standard. Private rented dwellings had the highest proportion of non-decent homes at 21%. Furthermore, homes in the private rented sector were more likely to have a problem with damp than other tenures. It should be noted that as dwellings in the private sector tend to be older, they are more likely to have defects that could lead to damp.
For largely the same reason, homes in the private rented sector scored lowest for energy efficiency, along with owner occupied dwellings. However, the energy efficiency of the English housing stock overall continues to improve.
Improving standards and developing policy in the private rented sector
The Dispute Service supports an evidence-based approach towards improving standards and developing policy in the private rented sector by providing a range of resources.
Here you can find information and our responses to key policy proposals affecting landlords, letting agents and tenants. We also carry out in-depth research on a range of issues in the sector and analyse key datasets.
About the Author
Dr Jennifer Harris, Head of Policy and Research at The Dispute Service
Dr Jennifer Harris is Head of Policy, Research and Strategy at The Dispute Service where she is establishing a new department to support an impartial and evidence-based approach towards improving standards in the private rented sector. Jennifer holds a PhD from the University of Bristol Law school. Prior to joining The Dispute Service she led the Raising Standards in the UK Private Rented Sector research programme within the UK Collaborative Centre for Housing Evidence (CaCHE) and has also worked as the Research Manager at the national organisation Homeless Link.
The views expressed in this content are solely those of the author alone and do not necessarily represent the views of TDS, its officers, or employees.