The number of over 45s living in privately rented homes has increased faster than those under the age of 35 during the past decade.
Analysis by Paragon Bank shows in 2021 there were 485,000 households in England where occupants were aged between 55 and 64, up 110% on the previous decade.
The number of households whose ages are between 45 and 54 increased by 50% to 691,000 and the figure for those aged 65 and over hit 382,000 in 2021, up 38% on the decade before.
However, households whose occupants are aged 16 to 24 declined by 3.7% over the same period to 560,000 with those aged between 25 and 34 increasing by 6% to 1.37 million.
Overall, households aged 35 or over living in rented homes totalled 2.5 million, compared to 1.9 million aged 34 or below, challenging the stereotype of the private rented sector being mostly a tenure for younger tenants.
The research also showed people are living in their rented accommodation for longer. The number of households who have lived in the same home for between five and 10 years over the past decade has grown 132%. The number of those in a property for between one and two years has increased by only 5%.
Sheldon Bosley Knight’s head of lettings Carolyn Arnold said: “We have certainly seen a shift in recent years in terms of the age demographic of our tenants.
“While there are still a significant number of younger people – those under 30 – who rent, the numbers of those aged 45 and above has grown significantly and they are also staying in their tenancies for longer.
“Young people rent for a variety of reasons, mostly because they are either saving for a deposit or are considering which area to settle down in.
“For older tenants, they may feel they want a simpler life, or a more flexible one and so are happy to release equity in their homes to fund their retirement plans.
“Whatever age bracket you are in and whatever your circumstances, at Sheldon Bosley Knight we have a wide range of rental properties available. If you are looking for somewhere please do pop into one of our offices and have a chat with the team.”