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One foot on the ladder

19 November 2013
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One foot on the ladder: how shared ownership can bring owning a home into reach

Date: 20 November 2013
Author: Vidhya Alakeson , Giselle Cory and Hannah Fearn

A major expansion of newly built shared ownership could help low and modest income working families across the country onto the property ladder, while keeping their housing costs affordable.

One foot on the ladder, shows that shared ownership – where buyers purchase at least 25 per cent of the equity in a home and pay a low rent on the remaining share owned by a Housing Association - is affordable for a couple with one child on £22,000 in 87 percent of local authorities in Britain, assuming they spend no more than 35 per cent of their net income on housing costs.

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A polarising crisis

13 November 2013
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A Polarising Crisis? The changing shape of the UK and US labour markets from 2008 to 2012

Date: 14 November 2013
Author: James Plunkett and João Paulo Pessoa

The polarisation of the UK labour market intensified during the great recession and its aftermath as low- and high-skilled jobs expanded while middle-skilled jobs fell as a share of employment, reveals A Polarising Crisis? The report, produced in collaboration with the London School of Economics, lends credence to concerns that the long downturn may have pushed the UK towards a two-tier labour market.

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Minimum stay

25 October 2013
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Minimum stay: Understanding how long people remain on the minimum wage

Date: 26 October 2013
Author: Conor D'Arcy and Alex Hurrell

Britain’s growing minimum wage workforce includes 320,000 people who have been trapped on the lowest rung of the pay ladder for five years or more.

Minimum Stay shows that 17 per cent of all those currently earning the minimum wage or up to 25p an hour above it, have only ever held jobs at this pay level when they have been employed in the last five years. Over the last 10 years, 140,000 workers (7 per cent of all minimum wage workers) have not earned more than 25 pence above the minimum wage. 90,000 workers have never earned more than 25 pence above the minimum wage in the 13 years since it was introduced in 1999.

 

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Building homes for generation rent

9 October 2013
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Building Homes for Generation Rent

Date: 10 October 2013
Author: Vidhya Alakeson and Katie Blacklock

A low-risk income return of 4.7 per cent should be achievable for institutional investors putting money into the private rented sector - a move which could also help solve Britain’s housing crisis for families on modest incomes.

Building Homes for Generation Rent identifies a £140 million property portfolio, made up of almost 800 rental homes around the country which are already being built or planned by not-for-profit housing providers, and models in detail the profit that a commercial stake in them would return. It shows that it should be possible to achieve a 3.9 per cent return on incomes alone, rising to 6.5 per cent or more on total returns – which include both income and rising capital values, at modest inflation. 

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Low Pay Britain 2013

3 September 2013
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Low Pay Britain 2013

Date: 4 September 2013
Author: Matthew Whittaker and Alex Hurrell

Economic downturn has pushed a further 1.4 million employees below the Living Wage – the rate deemed necessary for a basic standard of living. Low Pay Britain 2013 shows that 4.8 million Britons (20 per cent of all employees) earn below the Living Wage – a leap from 3.4 million (14 per cent) in 2009 – at the height of the recession. The report provides a comprehensive breakdown of the extent of sub-Living Wage pay and low pay more generally among the country’s 25 million employees, including by age, gender, sector and region.

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Does it pay to care

28 August 2013
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Does it pay to care? Under-payment of the National Minimum Wage in the social care sector

Date: 28 August 2013
Author: Matthew Pennycook

Some care workers are being paid as little as £5 an hour – well below the legal minimum wage.

Does it Pay to Care? shows that while headline pay rates for care workers who visit clients at home are set at or above the national minimum wage of £6.19 an hour, in practice those workers often lose at least £1 an hour because they are not paid separately for the time spent travelling between appointments and because providing decent care often takes longer than the time allocated by the employer for each visit. This would mean that over the course of a year, a care worker who spent an average of 35 hours a week at work for 48 weeks would lose out on more than £1600.

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All work and no pay

9 August 2013
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All work and no pay: Second earners’ work incentives and childcare costs under Universal Credit

Date: 24 August 2013
Author: Giselle Cory

A part-time cleaner with two children in childcare and working 25 hours a week would be £7 a week worse off than if she didn’t work at all while a part-time teacher with the same hours and childcare arrangements would be £57 a week better off under the Government’s new proposals to help working families with the costs of childcare.

All work and no pay highlights how extra support for childcare costs is skewed towards comparatively wealthier households, and recommends how the imbalance in childcare help could be fixed.

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Home Truths

12 July 2013
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Home Truths: How affordable is housing for Britain’s ordinary working families?

Date: 15 July 2013
Author: Vidhya Alakeson and Giselle Cory

One third of Britain is effectively off-limits to lower-income working families looking to rent a home privately because they can no longer afford a property in those parts of the country.

An alarming new report, Home Truths, is the first to give a comprehensive assessment of where less affluent families can reasonably afford to live, revealing that even a very modest rented home is beyond the reach of low income households in 33 per cent of all local authority areas.  

 

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Closer to the Edge - Extended version

11 July 2013
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Closer to the Edge? Prospects for household debt repayments as interest rates rise

Date: 11 July 2013
Author: Matthew Whittaker

The number of families in Britain with perilous levels of debt repayments could more than double to 1.2 million if interest rates rise faster than expected in the next four years and household income growth is weak and uneven. The figures suggest that the ongoing squeeze on households could leave Britain seriously exposed if interest rates were to rise faster than expected, resulting in levels of debt back at the heights last seen in the run up to the financial crisis.

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Future of the minimum wage discussion paper

4 July 2013
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Fifteen years later: A discussion paper on the future of the UK National Minimum Wage and Low Pay Commission

Date: 5 July 2013
Author: James Plunkett

In 15 years the UK National Minimum Wage (NMW) has evolved from a bold and experimental labour market intervention into a permanent and generally uncontroversial tool of economic policy. Yet sitting awkwardly alongside the success of the NMW is the scale of low pay in contemporary Britain. Although extreme, exploitatively low pay has been nearly abolished, one in five workers still earn below £7.49 an hour (two thirds of median pay), just £13,600 a year for working full-time and too little to afford a basic standard of living. This paper launches a major new project at the Resolution Foundation that will consider what role the UK’s National Minimum Wage and Low Pay Commission could play in its next fifteen years in reducing the incidence of low pay. The core of the project will be a high-level, expert panel to review the future of the NMW and LPC, chaired by Professor Sir George Bain, the founding chair of the LPC, working with some of the UK’s leading labour market economists and policy experts. 

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