Thursday 30 August 2018

Does the average Chichester resident own or rent their home?

In 1921, over 75% of homes in the UK were rented, with just 25% being owner occupied. Up until the mid-to-late 1960’s more people rented their home (mostly from the council) than owned it. Things have changed drastically since then though!

The proliferation of house building after the Second World War and the selling off of council houses started a trend towards people buying their own homes instead of renting them. The increasing availability of finance from banks and building societies enabled this trend to accelerate, which kick-started a huge increase in property prices.

Whilst house prices remained relatively stable throughout the UK in the 1950’s and 60’s, they suddenly leapt 400% in the 70’s and a further 170% in the 80’s before flat-lining throughout most of the 1990’s (as people suffered from the effects of Black Wednesday and the 15% interest rates that went with it).

The ‘noughties’ witnessed an overall rise of 109%, as the latter half saw house prices drop after the credit crunch. The after-effects of this can still be seen as we enter the final fifth of this decade with the average property price in the UK up ‘just’ 38% since 2010.

Does this suggest the growing popularity of buy-to-let is not the cause of ‘rocketing’ house prices? This makes sense, as most investors use sold data and rental yield projections to limit what they’re prepared to pay for a property, whereas homeowners are more willing to stretch their budget for a property that tugs at their heart strings.

Like the rest of the UK, in Chichester this trend towards homeownership has stalled slightly in the past decade. 33,481 households in Chichester were owner-occupied in 2011, up from 32,138 in 2001.

However, when you consider the total number of households grew from 45,796 to 49,848 in this time (a lot of these new homes were bought by investors) homeownership actually dropped in Chichester from 70% to 67% from 2001 to 2011.

With this drop in the percentage of people who own their own home in Chichester, there is an increasing number of people looking to rent. Some do so out of choice whereas many more are unable to afford to buy, particularly struggling to save the necessary deposit required to do so.

Nearly every report suggests the overall level of homeownership is likely to continue to drop throughout the country. Whilst I don’t envisage a complete reversal in the trend of the past 50 years, it is clear that there will be growing demand for good quality rental property in the area.

For more tips about buying, selling, letting and renting in Chichester, please visit

(This article was featured in the Chichester Observer's property section on August 30, 2018)

Clive Janes, CRJ Lettings

If you are looking for an agent that is well establishedprofessional and communicative in Chichester, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.

E-mail me on or call 01243 624 599.

Don't forget to visit the links below to view my previous buy-to-let deals and Chichester Property News articles:

c/o CRJ Lettings, 30B Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DP

Chichester rental valuation

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