UK housing

Government urged to build 78,000 affordable homes a year

Almost 600 additional low-cost rented homes need to be built every week to fix the UK’s broken housing market, according to a new study.

Analysis from the independent Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) has claimed that the government’s housing plans will deliver less than 100 new low-cost rented homes a week – just one-sixth of the extra housing needed.

The research also claimed that England could experience a shortfall of 355,000 affordable homes by the end of the parliament, unless the government increases the supply of such housing.

JRF is urging the government to address these issues in its forthcoming social housing green paper by committing to delivering 78,000 affordable homes a year.

“The prime minister has recognised that the housing market is broken and it’s welcome that the government wants to get the country building the homes we desperately need,” said Campbell Robb, chief executive at Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

“But this must include homes that people on low incomes can afford.

“The government’s existing plans risk falling far short of the numbers of affordable homes required to ease the strain on families facing eye-watering private rents.

“Voters across all wage brackets want to see action on housing and it is simply not right that so many people in our country are locked out of the opportunity to build a decent and secure life because of crippling housing costs.

“The forthcoming social housing green paper must commit to increasing the supply of low-cost rented homes.

“The government can start by building 78,000 genuinely affordable homes a year.

“By fixing our broken housing market, we can help release people from the grip of poverty.”

A spokesman from the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, added: "We have delivered over 257,000 affordable properties to rent since 2010 and have unveiled plans to cap tenancy deposits and ban letting fees to tenants.

"We are also investing £9bn in affordable homes to increase the number of properties which will also keep prices down for renters."

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