Is the desire to own property outdated?

Is the desire to own property outdated?

For many years, British people have had the inherent desire to own property, but why? It's traditional, it's what our parents did, and for many people it's simply seen as being a life milestone and a symbol of having made it in life. 

Is it an outdated style of living, though? According to one expert, it may well be the case. Sir Jon Cunliffe, who is in charge of financial stability at the Bank of England, said that the supply and demand issue that's been seen across the UK and the "natural" desire to own a home has contributed to the growth of property prices and led to a market that could potentially struggle with sustainability moving forward. 

"There's something basic in us that makes us want to own property," he told the Telegraph. "What worries me about the housing market [is] people want more housing than there is. The moment they feel their income is going up or has a chance of going up then their preference is to want to buy houses; supply is not keeping up with demand."

So how else could we live if long-term purchasing of more and more houses is not the sustainable future of the British property market? 

One option is to look towards the sort of model that is seen across Europe and the US, where the vast majority of people will never own their own property - instead renting for life from a landlord. 

Perhaps it's even a model that is starting to creep into the UK already. More than ten million people nationwide now rent properties, and landlords are constantly seeing a rise in confidence as the demand for their properties continues to rise. 

In London, more families now rent rather than buying their own home, and a rising number of young professionals now foresee renting in the long term because it offers them far more flexibility and the chance to move home at short notice should they need to in order to further their career.