‘Generation Rent’ and intergenerational relations in the era of housing financialisation
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Homeownership has been in decline in a number of developed societies since the early 2000s driven, primarily, by declining entry among younger households who have been increasingly pushed into the rental sector. This trend has been associated with a growing intergenerational divide, or even conflict, and the emergence of ‘Generation Rent’. This paper explores the conditions surrounding diminishing access to owner-occupation among new households with a focus on the historic maturation of homeownership sectors, the restructuring of the political economy (financialization) around housing wealth and the inter-cohort dynamics surrounding the accumulation and transfer of housing wealth. The paper takes an international perspective drawing on evidence from two parallel, but contrasting cases: Japan and the UK. The analysis illustrates the interrelatedness of interand intra-generational inequalities, with the former reinforcing the latter. It also focuses on the role of families as both a moderator of generational inequity at the micro level as well as an enhancer of socioeconomic inequalities overall.
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