Tenants in the private rented sector are more satisfied with their housing than those in the social sector according to new data out today.
The annual English Housing Survey has shown that 83 per cent of tenants in private rented homes are satisfied with their accommodation compared to 81 per cent in the social sector. The survey also shows improvements in the standard of private rented housing together with rents falling in real terms.
The survey shows that between 2006 and 2012 the proportion of private rented homes classed as non-decent reduced from 47 per cent to 33 per cent. This is despite 40 per cent of properties in the private rented sector being 100 years old or more.
Between 2008/2009 and 2012/2013, rents in the social sector increased on average by 25.3 per cent whilst in the private sector rents increased by just 6.5 per cent, representing a fall in real terms.
Private rents remain higher than in the social sector because as the survey notes:
“While rents in the social sector are subsidised, the difference in average rents will also partly reflect the difference in the type of properties in the sectors. The private rented sector generally has a much wider and more varied range of stock while the social sector has a higher proportion of purpose built flats, which tend to be cheaper.”
Last year the private rented sector overtook the social rented sector in size accounting for 18 per cent of English households compared to 17 per cent in the social sector.
Commenting on the findings, Alan Ward, Chairman of the Residential Landlords Associations said:
“Today’s findings demonstrate significant progress in the sector. Standards are up, rents are falling in real terms and the sector is now the only housing tenure growing.
“Whilst it is pleasing that tenants are so satisfied with their homes there is more still to be done. This includes radical reforms to the way the sector is regulated to ensure local authorities properly target and prosecute criminal landlords rather than swamping the vast majority of good landlords with ever more costly red tape.”