Working families in two-thirds of England are unable to afford rented private housing
July 9, 2019
Research conducted by housing charity, Shelter, reveals that a significant shortage of social housing in the UK has locked many into the cycle of renting, leaving many households unable to rent private houses.
The figures show that lower-paid working families in 218 council areas are being forced to put 30 per cent of their salary towards renting a two-bedroom private house.
The study suggests that the ‘rent trap’ is cutting off access for working families, pushing them into poverty as the prospect of renting a home becomes unaffordable.
The report found that low earning working families in 112 areas across England spent 40 per cent of their income to rent a privately owned, two-bedroom house.
The borough of Kensington and Chelsea are the least affordable areas as a typical working family looking to rent a private home would be required to pay 127 per cent of their take-home pay in order to afford rent.
The next in line is Westminster which requires 111 per cent of income to be put towards rent and Camden at 92 per cent.
Many families are forced to depend on additional state funds to be able to afford private housing.
The study found that social housing is 100 per cent affordable for working families as they are generally cheaper than private rental properties.
Social housing is currently at the lowest in 70 years; as the number of families in England continues to rise and the state-owned initiative remains stagnant.
Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter, told The Independent: “The steep decline in social housing has left a growing number of families caught in a debilitating ‘rent-trap’.
“It makes no sense to continue haemorrhaging billions of pounds in housing benefit to private landlords, when the Government could support families by investing in a sustainable, long-term solution to the housing emergency instead.”
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