Britain’s housing disaster has hit a brand new low with not one of many single rooms out there for personal lease in massive components of London and Larger Manchester inside the funds of individuals on housing profit.
None of 87 rooms for lease in outer south-west London – which incorporates areas corresponding to Feltham and Hanworth – have been reasonably priced for folks counting on native housing allowance (LHA) and neither have been any of the rooms within the southern Larger Manchester space, together with Stockport and Wythenshawe, based on an evaluation of official 2018 knowledge by London Councils, the native authorities affiliation for the capital.
LHA is relied upon by 1.2m households to lease non-public lodging however it has been frozen since 2016 and will probably be till at the very least 2020 as a part of welfare cuts. However council bosses have warned that with non-public rents persevering with to rise, sharp falls in affordability during the last three years are inflicting homelessness and little one neglect as households reduce on necessities together with meals to make up lease shortfalls.
In Swindon and Newbury, solely 2% of one-bedroom flats out there on the non-public rental market are actually reasonably priced and simply 3% in Northampton. Fewer than one in 10 three-bedroom household properties are reasonably priced in Ipswich, Milton Keynes, Rugby, Luton and Cambridge. Within the capital, the plunge in affordability has been biggest in outer north-east London, which incorporates Ilford, Dagenham and Romford. In 2016, 30% of one- and two-bedroom properties have been reasonably priced, however fewere than 2% are actually
Londoners on housing allowance are usually discovering themselves £50 every week quick and unable to pay their lease, London Councils mentioned. Barking and Dagenham council reported a 200% rise within the variety of folks approaching them for assist with housing during the last 12 months.
The housing profit freeze is “fuelling London’s skyrocketing charges of homelessness”, mentioned Cllr Muhammed Butt, London Councils’ government member for welfare.
“Pressures on family funds are immense and are a vital issue within the improve in homelessness,” he mentioned, including that the variety of homeless households within the capital was 50% larger in 2018 than initially of the last decade.
“That is leaving folks in a extra precarious place,” mentioned Mark Fowler, the director of group options at Barking and Dagenham council. “It means much less cash for meals and clothes. You’ll be able to see a rise within the neglect of youngsters.”
The work and pensions secretary, Amber Rudd, instructed parliament in March she had considerations in regards to the impression of the housing allowance on affordability and would talk about it with the chancellor forward of the funds, however the freeze stays in place.
In outer east London, which incorporates areas corresponding to Walthamstow and West Ham, 1 / 4 of rents have been reasonably priced for folks counting on profit in search of a one-bed place in 2016, however that has since fallen to lower than 2%.
The median price of a two-bedroom flat in outer east London, which incorporates Barkin,g is £316 per week. However the most quantity payable by housing profit is £244. In Bristol and Cambridge, solely 5% of the two-bedroom flats have been reasonably priced, and in Stevenage and central Northamptonshire it was simply 4%.
“There’s a hole between LHA and the underside third of rents in 97% of areas throughout the nation,” mentioned Greg Beales, the marketing campaign director at Shelter. “When housing profit is so low that persons are having to seek out over £50 of week to cowl even the bottom rents, they face grim selections between meals, electrical payments and protecting a roof over their head.”
Shelter, the housing and homelessness charity, is asking on the federal government to carry the freeze to cease extra folks falling into poverty and homelessness. It acknowledged the federal government had supplied as much as 3% further for about 140,000 households hit hardest by the LHA fee freeze, however mentioned this was not sufficient.
A authorities spokesperson mentioned: “Offering high quality and truthful social housing is an absolute precedence. The federal government elevated greater than 360 native housing allowance charges this 12 months, by focusing on further funding at low-income households. We’re additionally investing £4.8bn to construct extra reasonably priced properties in London and have abolished the housing income account borrowing cap – giving councils throughout the nation the instruments they should ship a brand new technology of reasonably priced housing.”