How life in London has transformed for millennials

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London is one place in the world that creates and perpetuates trends. It’s a city that cycles through these and as a result it has gone through major changes, particularly over the past two decades.

A lot of the changes the city have gone through has come as a result of the digital age we’re living in and also due to politics and industry, which have had a huge effect on the finance and property markets in London.

Unsurprisingly, all of this has had an effect on the way millennials live, work and enjoy the city. We’re going to outline some of the ways in which this group of people differ from the previous generations who flocked to London.

Work

The last 20 years have seen huge growth in jobs, particularly in the technology and creative industries, which has seen the creation of areas like Silicon Roundabout – otherwise known as Tech City – in the east end of London.

Not only have parts of the city like this flourished due to being twinned with the likes of Silicon Valley in California, they have also seen the integration and growth of start-up companies. In fact, many people in London are now turning towards self-employment, as some of the most successful businesses in Tech City are independent start-ups.

The job market isn’t just limited to the technological industry, however. After all, London is one of the world fashion powerhouses and lots of millennials are now kicking off their own unique businesses to make a difference in this industry.

Of course, industries are now diversifying, which means that digital technology and things like the fashion marketplace are beginning to combine, creating an even wider range of creative jobs.

In terms of statistics, Splittable has found that there are four times as many creative jobs in London as there were in 1996 and 27 per cent of job growth comes from technology. Similarly, self-employment has risen from 13 per cent to 14.5 per cent between 1996 and 2016 in London, perhaps showing that millennials have more of a flair for business.

Housing

It’s a well-known fact that London is one of the most expensive cities in the world to live in – it has a thriving property market, but getting on the first rung of the ladder can be quite difficult.

In 1996, there were more young professionals buying property in the city than now. Instead, most are now privately renting or living with their parents – either in a bid to save money on rent, or to put towards a deposit for buying a house.

This isn’t just limited to people who have just graduated or those who are in university, as 50 per cent of under-35s are now renting, which is an exponentially higher amount than two decades previously.

In the same way, 17 per cent of young professionals lived with their parents in 1996 and now around 25 per cent of the same age group are in this position.

Putting buying a house into perspective, Splittable says the average property is now four times as expensive to buy as it was in 1996.

What this means, is that millennial Londoners are falling into two categories: they’re either a bunch of renters, similar to the lifestyle of trendy young Parisians, or they’re working hard to improve their careers to get on to the property market.

Costs in general

Of course, it isn’t just the property prices that have increased, as the cost of a pint of beer has also doubled in just twenty years.

Travel is one of the biggest expenses for Londoners too, as they need to get around this massive city and there’s only so much walking and cycling a person can do! Regarding public transport, a seven-day travelcard for all six zones costs twice what it did back in 1996.

Perhaps the highest spike in prices is for theatre tickets, which can be as much as triple what they were in days gone by.

However, we can’t ignore that there are lots of ways to have a good time on the cheap and even for free! You can enjoy theatre, music and arts in public spaces and even at large national landmarks for absolutely nothing and – if you’re willing to take a gamble – go and see some independent theatre in Notting Hill. Tickets for these shows are much cheaper than West End stage theatre and you might even be able to see some breakout acts for half the cost!