Young and homeless research

Young and homeless reports explore the reasons young people become homelessness, the support available to them, and areas where improvements should be made.

Contribute to our 2015 research

If you work with young people we need your help with our 2015 Young and Homeless research. We have two versions of the survey, one for local authorities and one for homelessness providers - your views and experience will help us make the case to policy makers and funders for the most effective support for young people who become homeless.

2014 findings 

Based on  responses from 207 frontline homelessness charities and local authority housing departments, the 2014 Young and Homeless report provides a picture of the experiences of young homeless people in England.


  • 52% of those seeking help with homelessness are under 25. 
  • Councils are preventing homelessness amongst homeless young people in just 1 in 5 cases.
  • More than half of young people become homeless because of a relationship breakdown, mainly with their parents.
  • Homeless young people face a range of complex problems – more than 6 in 10 are not in education, employment or training for example.  
  • Half of agencies believe the problems faced by young people have got worse since last year. 
  • Charities report that homelessness caused by financial problems due to benefit reductions has increased six-fold. 90% believe sanctions have affected young people's ability to access accommodation. 
  • 74% of homelessness organisations were unable to support a young person due to limited capacity.


We have seen a number of improvements since our report in 2013:

  • Half of areas are now using the recommended 'positive pathway' approach to helping vulnerable young people.
  • A third charities report increasing support for young people.
  • 92% of local authorities are now carrying out home visits, a 20% increase from last year. 
  • 97% now have a joint protocol between their housing and children’s services departments to ensure homelessness 16 and 17 year olds receive the care they are owed under the children’s act 1989

More needs to be done

The report calls for a number of improvements, including:

  • More prevention services, such as mediation, to reduce incidents of family breakdown.
  • Schools and other types of youth provision should increase education on homelessness.

Young and homeless 2014

Our third annual Young & Homeless report explores the reasons young people become homeless, the support available to them, and areas that need to be improved.


Young and homeless 2013

Our third annual report on youth homelessness published in January 2014 found young homeless people are still facing many challenges but that progress is being made.


No Excuses - preventing homelessness for the next generation 2013

Freedom of Information responses from 216 councils suggests that all too many homeless teenagers are not having their needs properly assessed and are being housed in unsuitable accommodation. 


Young and homeless 2012

Our second report on youth homelessness was published in December 2012. With evidence from 117 homelessness charities and 101 local authorities, we found that youth homelessness has risen. Changes to the welfare system, such as extension of the shared accommodation rate are already having a negative impact on young people's ability to access housing.


Young and homeless 2011

Our first report on youth homelessness was published in December 2011. Drawing on evidence provided by 79 homelessness charities and 108 local authorities, we highlighted an increase in young people requiring help and outlined the response from local authorities and the homelessness sector. 


Talk To Us

Francesca Albanese

Research Manager

Francesca is our Research Manager and has responsibility for Homeless Link’s research programme.

Telephone: 020 7840 4422

Take action on youth homelessness

No young person ever asks for the circumstances that lead them to becoming homeless.

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