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Dodgy ads and unscrupulous landlords – life as part of generation rent

“Generation rent” is now a staple phrase in the housing lexicon – barely a week goes by without a news story about the plight of hard-pressed millennials priced-out of home ownership. Just over a decade ago, around a quarter of 25-34 year olds lived in private rental accommodation, by 2015-16 that had increased to 46%. The doubling in size of the private rented sector since 2002 has, in no small part, been driven by young people.

That, of course, is not to say that all those millennial renters want to own their own homes – not everyone wants the commitment of mortgage and maintenance. But whether young people are renting out of necessity or choice, their experience is unlikely to be wholly smooth. Dealing with unreliable landlords, or feet-dragging estate agents, is par for the course as the video above shows. And sadly, as James Bloodworth points out in his contribution to the #HomeTruths series, illegal landlord behaviour is far from rare: housing charity Shelter estimate that one million private renters were victims of law-breaking landlords in 2015.

Even the process of finding a room or property to rent, particularly in a high demand area, can be a tortuous. In the video below, renters recount their experiences of dodgy adverts and unscrupulous estate agents, sky-high rents and misleading information. Issues that will be familiar to millions of renters, most of whom will have had to navigate the process while knowing little about their rights.


For more on UK housing

Home truths – Part I: The UK housing crisis in six graphs

By Liam Halligan