Annex A – Trends in the Size of the Private Rented Sector in Scotland
Latest available Scottish Household Survey figures up to 2019 show that the private rented sector in Scotland has more than doubled in size since 1999, and now accounts for around a seventh of all homes in Scotland. However, whilst private rented stock has increased substantially in size in the period between 2002 and 2016, the number of private rented households has since dropped slightly between 2016 and 2018.
The figures show that the proportion of households in the private rented sector grew steadily from five per cent in 1999 (120,000 households) to 15 per cent in 2016 (370,000 households), an increase of a quarter of a million households. The proportion has since dropped slightly to 14 per cent in 2018, to stand at 340,000 households, after which it has remained at a similar size in the latest year 2019.
Chart A1 below illustrates these trends, along with figures for other tenures. The percentage of households in owner occupation grew from 61 per cent in 1999 to 66 per cent in 2005, was stable at around 65 and 66 per cent until 2009 but then declined by an estimated 90,000 households between 2009 and 2014 to 60 per cent. The level has since remained around 61 and 62 per cent each year, but has grown back in absolute numbers by 80,000 between 2014 and 2019.
The percentage of households in the social rented sector declined from 32 per cent in 1999 to 23 per cent in 2007, an estimated drop of 150,000 households, but has since stabilised and has remained at between 22 and 24 per cent of all households since then, which represents an estimated increase of approximately 50,000 households since 2007.
Separate stock by tenure estimates are available from annual housing statistics publications, with the latest available publication covering stock estimates up to the year 2018.