Young teachers unable to get on property ladder

Two-thirds (65%) young teachers do not feel they are able to afford to meet their housing aspirations in the next few years, a conference organised by the NASUWT, the largest teachers’ union in the UK, has heard.

Hundreds of teachers aged under 30 from across the UK gathered in Birmingham today (Saturday 23 January) for the NASUWT’s Young Teachers’ Consultation Conference to discuss the challenges facing them and to engage in professional development workshops.

The conference heard concerns about the lack of affordable housing options, young teachers subjected to a string of temporary employment contracts, and the expense of water and utility bills on top of mortgage or rent costs.

As well as worries about housing, young teachers raised concerns about their lack of ability to plan financially for the future, with over half (56%) saying they are not confident this was achievable.

A third of the young teachers (33%) said they spend more than 50% of their net monthly income on accommodation and housing costs.

The real-time electronic poll of young teachers attending the conference found that:

  • A quarter (27%) have to receive financial assistance from friends or family, overdrafts, credit cards or loans;
  • Two thirds (67%) live with parents, friends or share with other adults, even after a number of years in teaching;
  • 71% are concerned they will not be able to progress to a higher salary in their current job;
  • And 44% say they will not be able to, or doubt they will be able to, afford to stay in the teaching profession.

When asked what action the Government could take to help support the living standards of young teachers, the provision of affordable housing for key workers including teachers, was the most important action. Improved access with help to buy and improved help to secure a permanent job were also the highest rated proposals.

When asked what action the Government could take to help support the living standards of young teachers, the provision of affordable housing for key workers including teachers, was the most important action. Improved access with help to buy and improved help to secure a permanent job were also the highest rated proposals.

Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:

“The experiences shared by young teachers today demonstrate that for many, home ownership is increasingly out of reach.

“Young teachers in particular are struggling financially, as the pay within the profession becomes increasingly uncompetitive with other sectors.

“It is a sad indictment of how little the Government values the profession when teachers have to rely on family support or loans and credit cards just to make it from month to month.

“And this is leading to an unacceptable situation where young teachers are priced out of the housing market.

“It is therefore little wonder that fewer young people are choosing to enter the teaching profession, which has undoubtedly compounded the current teacher recruitment crisis.”