8 June 2011
Investing publicly-owned land in the development of new rental properties could help solve the affordable housing gap
Karen and Darren are much like other parents in their mid-30s; juggling work and the needs of four children. With two decent salaries from full-time, skilled jobs and help from tax credits and child benefit, they should be comfortably off. But at the end of each month, there is nothing left. Despite their best efforts to rein in spending, their aspiration to move from a rented house to their own home remains just that.
According to last week's report from the Halifax, Karen and Darren's story is familiar to many young people in Britain today, who cannot rely on the "bank of Mum and Dad" to get on the housing ladder. While their parents owned their own homes, half of the 25- to 40-year-old tenants surveyed have given up any hope of ever owning a home. This fits with Resolution Foundation analysis showing that the proportion of under-35s on low to middle incomes who were renting trebled between 1988 and 2008.
29 October 2010
As cutbacks force more families into private rentals the market must adapt, writes Louisa Darian in Inside Housing.
The government’s announcements to cut the social housing budget to £4.4 billion will hit many low earning households. Coupled with already low rates of affordable house building under the previous government, these proposals will mean that more and more low earning families will be forced into unsuitable private rented sector accommodation. Those fortunate enough to be offered a social home will be faced with a much worse deal - shorter tenancies and higher rents.
The coalition is hoping that this new type of tenancy will attract more institutional investment into the social sector - fixed-term contracts will allow for properties to be ‘churned’, enabling an investor to get a return from the sales. At the same time, longer term tenancies than those commonly offered in the PRS will limit potential voids. Housing associations and councils will need to be open and flexible to new funding models.
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