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The monthly magazine providing news analysis and professional research for the discerning private investor/landlord

Grey PRS: Investing in an Aging Population

Kirk Taylor, head of development at Kajima Partnerships, comments

Britain faces a housing crisis, with the rental sector in particular, in need of  support. RICS estimates that the UK will have a shortage of 1.8m rental properties by 2025. To help address this, the Government is keen to foster the growth of a professionally managed, institutionally backed private rented sector (PRS). So far, many of the proposed PRS schemes have focused on attracting young professionals in big cities, failing to take account of the UK’s aging population and the advantages that targeting an older segment of the population – ‘Grey PRS’ - could deliver.

This failure to consider expanding the focus of PRS ignores some very pertinent facts. The UK population is aging. The number of over 50s is growing and while currently around 23% of the population are aged over 60 this set to rise over the next 20 years to close to 30%.  

Close to a third of people aged 50 and over currently rent, up from just over one in four in 2011 according to research carried out by Saga. In London alone, there are around 150,000 households renting privately where at least one person is aged over 50, according to the Nationwide Foundation, with projections suggesting this will continue to rise.

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