Livewire - March 14, 2014

Have your say

By Molly Lynch

In less than a month, I’ll be moving for the fourth time in two years.

New job, new flat, new city. All very promising.

But as I find myself entering yet another Safe Deposit Scheme, it is making me wonder when, or if, I’ll ever have a place to call my own.

After moving out of the family home two years ago, I’ve become a fully-fledged member of Generation Rent.

And my inability to resist the lure of Zara and Reiss means the only real prospect of saving for a deposit – now an average of £27,550 for first-time buyers – would be if I slip into a coma, or escaped the cruel clutches of Mistress Fashion by joining the friendly folk at British Naturism.

Some renters will have you believe the thrill of being able to move wherever at the drop of a hat (or rather, a month’s notice) outweighs the perks of being a property owner.

Really? For me, there’s nothing quite as depressing as realising all your worldly possessions – except for an extensive wardrobe of clothes and accessories – fit snugly into a few Ikea laundry bags.

Should I die tomorrow I will leave behind a lamp, a few books, cushions, a laptop, a toaster and an opened box of pans.

I haven’t bothered with a will – I’ll let the family fight it out in the courts for the chipped mugs and hot water bottle.

My new place is unfurnished, which has served only to reiterate how little I have.

Luckily the realisation that I don’t even have a bed to call my own came around the same time my parents decided to buy themselves a luxury mattress.

Cue a major guilt trip, a gentle reminder that I’ll be the one who decides which care home they live out their last days in, followed by a cry of, ‘It took me and your dad 25 years of hard work to get a good mattress!’ – and eventual mutual agreement for a combined birthday/Christmas present.

Affordable housing has been touted as the solution to Generation Rent, but developers will always look to make as big a return as they can, regardless of what the planning application says.

And unless the Government gets stricter, for every step young people try to take on the property ladder, a snake will never be far away.