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Havering becoming unaffordable to working families on low income

Houses in Collier Row (credit: David Howard)

Working families on low wages are struggling to afford to privately rent a home in Havering.

Those with one adult working full-time and another part-time spend 48% of their annual income renting two-bedroom housing, according to charity Shelter. 

On average, the properties cost £13,200 to rent annually while a couple earns £27,561. 

Two-thirds of the country is currently impacted by the issue, with people in 112 local council areas spending more than 40% of their earnings.  

“Families in lower-paid jobs are having their bank balances bled dry by expensive private rents across huge swathes of the country,” said Polly Neate, Chief Executive of Shelter.

 “The steep decline in social housing has left a growing number of families caught in a debilitating ‘rent-trap’.

“It’s disgraceful that despite working every hour they can, many parents are now forced to rely on housing benefit to keep a roof over their children’s heads.

Low earners in Barking and Dagenham, Redbridge, Newham, Waltham Forest, and Brentwood all spend more than half of their earnings renting the properties.   

Tower Hamlets has the eighth highest percentage of income spent nationally, with 75%.  

“The next Prime Minister, whoever that may be, needs to realise social housing is the best cure to the affordability crisis we face,” added Polly.

“We recommend the delivery of 3.1 million new social homes over the next 20 years because we think that’s the only way to lift millions out of housing poverty and into a stable home.”





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