Home and the Heart

Home may be where the heart is – however four in ten renters don’t see the place they currently live in as a proper home and a worrying eight in ten renters felt they had ‘no choice’ when it came to whether to rent or buy.

A study of 2,000 Brits explored the process of creating a home and found that not owning their property was the biggest reason for a house not feeling a home.  The research, which was commissioned by L&Q, found that those living in rented accommodation felt unable to put their own touches on the property or decorate it as they’d like. Researchers also found that despite flying the nest to rent or buy elsewhere, the majority of us still call ‘home’ the house where mum and dad are.

Cathy Lloyd, Sales Director at L&Q comments: “One of our most basic comforts is that sense of home and it seems for many of us that will always be strongly tied to our mums and dads or the place we grew up in.

“However the results show a large number of people don’t see the place where they currently live as a home but rather a place where they sleep and live.

“They say that an Englishman’s home is his castle, so it is therefore no surprise that many who rent don’t feel at home. There is more to creating a home than just the building, as the results show – the life and experience we go through inside a property plays a big part in our feelings of homeliness.

“With the average first time buyer deposit now standing at £26,134, it is more important than ever to support buyers onto the property ladder and increase awareness of initiatives like Shared Ownership.”

Among the factors that make a house feel like a real home were putting up lots of family photographs, unpacking the very last box and buying new furniture for the property. While getting excited at the thought of returning to the house after a holiday was also a sure sign of a true home. And just a third of those studied considered themselves ‘house proud’ or caring about their current residence.

Experiencing your first Christmas in a property was deemed essential to considering that place a home, results showed.

Being somewhere for all four seasons was likely to raise that feeling of homeliness, while a good top-to-bottom clean of a place really makes it feel yours, it emerged.

Planting your own things in the garden was likely to raise a real fondness for a property, while finding a good pub nearby was deemed crucial by many a Brit to getting that sense of home.

Results also showed it takes one year and four months for a house to really feel like a proper home, on average.

A territorial seven in ten believe a property can only feel like a home once all traces of the people who lived there before are removed.

The biggest problem for renters was not feeling a home was really theirs or the worry they could soon be asked to leave. While a fifth were living with broken or damaged goods that the owners hadn’t replaced and many either didn’t like their landlord or had experienced fallouts in the past.

Cathy Lloyd added, “Young people in the UK still aspire to owning their own property, but often stumble at the first hurdle of not being able to afford the deposit. When purchasing a share of the property however, buyers only need a fraction of the cash deposit compared to the open market.

“With nearly 3.9 million of Brits now paying monthly rents, Shared Ownership is an affordable route to home ownership for those earning from £25,000 per year.”

To help more first time buyers onto the property ladder, L&Q launched their PricedIn campaign. Designed to raise awareness of Shared Ownership and its benefits, the organisation has helped over 300 first time buyers in the last year alone to purchase their first home.


Jo Murphy
Tel (Office) : +44-(0)20-7420-3550
[email protected]