There is a warning that a housing crisis will stop one million young people from getting on the property ladder by 2020.
A report published by the York based Joseph Rowntree Foundation has looked at housing options and solutions for young people. It has concluded than in just eight years time an extra 1.5 million 18 to 30-year-olds will be forced into private renting.
The report also suggests an extra half a million young people will be forced to stay with their parents well into their 30s. That will mean the total number of young people living with mum and dad will rise to 3.7 million by 2020.
It goes on to predict that the number of homeless people under 25 will also rise to 81,000.
There is a warning that a "three tier" system will develop in the renting market, with those at the top who can afford to pay, a "squeezed middle" group who might struggle to pay and a bottom level of 400,000 who risk being excluded completely.
Our badly functioning housing system will see those on the lowest incomes really struggling to compete in the competitive rental market of 2020. Renting is likely to be the only game in town and young people are facing fierce competition to secure a home in what is an already diminished supply of housing. With 400,000 vulnerable young people, including families, on the bottom rung of a three-tier private renting system we need to avoid turning a housing crisis into a homelessness disaster.
With 1.5 million more young people no longer able to become home-owners by 2020, it's vital we take the opportunity to make renting work better. To do this we need strong political leadership that is willing to work with both landlords and tenants to make it more affordable and stable for 'generation rent'. Young people are at a double disadvantage - it takes longer to raise enough for a deposit and their wages are generally lower. But there are simply not enough homes and those we do have cost too much to rent or buy. While more housing would help address this, it may not come quick enough for young people forced into renting in eight years' time.