In a new snapshot of Britain, it has emerged that over three-quarters of all new UK households are being created in the private rented sector.
Data from lender Kent Reliance says the exact figure is 77.4%, with the private rented sector growing by nearly 150,000 households in the year to March.
The lender predicts that the sector will rise from 4.8m households currently to 5.5m by 2020.
The second edition of Kent Reliance’s report on the buy-to-let sector analysed census data and found that by the end of March, the total value of property owned by UK landlords stood at £990bn, increasing by 11% in the last year.
Andy Golding, chief executive of OneSavings Bank, which trades under the Kent Reliance and InterBay brands in buy-to-let, said there was a “gaping chasm between growing demand for housing and the number of houses being built each year”.
He went on: “Combined with the dearth of high loan to value lending to first-time buyers, this will continue to buoy demand for rental accommodation, as well as landlords’ returns, and the sector will continue to expand.”
Separately, buy-to-let specialist Mortgages for Business said that its own research indicates that over the next six months, 65% of landlords expect to expand their portfolios, compared to 55% six months ago.
David Whittaker, managing director, said: “A new surge of demand is putting more upwards pressure on rents, and landlords are only just beginning to supply more homes to let in response.”