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Westminster. We have a problem.

  • 4 million working people will need access to affordable homes if there is full employment by 2024.
  • Over the last 40 years, fewer than 150,000 homes have been built per year. We need 250,000 to keep up with demand.
  • In the last decade, London has lost 8,000 social-rented homes.
  • Supply of new affordable homes dropped by more than 70% in Greater London in 2015-16 compared with the previous year.
  • Approximately 50% working households renting privately are receiving housing benefit because they don’t earn enough to cover rent and living expenses.
  • £1,000 extra is being spent to keep roofs over the heads of private renters – rising to £3,300 a year in London.
  • Almost 1 in 3 housing benefit recipients are renting from private landlords.
  • Taxpayers contributed £9.3bn in housing benefit to private landlords last year, nearly double that paid 10 years ago. Providing enough affordable housing, could save £1.5bn a year.
  • Currently there are around 5000 unintentionally homeless people in London. Significant numbers are children/pregnant women living in emergency B&B/hostels.
  • Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, has said that problems with housing are the ‘biggest risk’ to the UK economy. It’s hard to run a business if your employees find it hard to get a home.
  • The future for our cities looks bleak if those who make, maintain and repair things, who care for the ill and old, who clean, who cook and wait in restaurants and who look after and teach children, move away. Our communities rely on police officers, refuse collectors, nurses and shop assistants. The creative and inventive types will go too and they are currently a big part of the UK’s sales pitch to the world.
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