Average deposit would take 23 years to save
The seventh annual Scottish Widows Savings and Investment Report revealed that the average private renter saved £2,180.
With the average deposit for a first time buyer standing at £27,984 it would take almost 13 years to save.
The research also suggests that many renters may have given up on property ownership with just 29% actively saving to put a deposit on a home.
Iain McGowan, head of savings and investments at Scottish Widows, said: “We live in a society where many strive to own their own homes but for many people facing high rent and increasing living costs this isn’t going to be achievable.”
The research also found that those who rent privately are 50% more likely than the average to have no savings at all (25% vs 17%) and a third more likely to have total savings of less than £1,000 (20% vs 15%).
McGowan said: “What is most worrying is that over a third of renters have no savings at all and are leaving themselves vulnerable in the short and long terms.
“The importance of saving goes much further than getting on the property ladder as a healthy savings pot can provide an invaluable buffer for the unexpected or tough times.
“Whilst owning a property is seen for many as something to work towards, we need to ensure that people are able to manage their out-goings, whether rent or a mortgage and create that safety-net for unexpected bumps in the road.
“There is no doubt that adding to a savings pot can be difficult in challenging economic times but it is this that we should all be aiming for.”