Decisive action needed as households in temporary accommodation continue to climb
The number of households accepted as homeless by local authorities fell by 1% in the third quarter of 2016, to 14,930, although this figure is 2% up on the same quarter in 2015. The end of an assured shorthold tenancy remained the main cause of homelessness at 32%.
The number of households in temporary accommodation at the end of September had risen by 9% on the previous year, to a peak of 74,630. This also represents a 55% increase since the figure experienced a new low on 31 December 2010.
The number of households in temporary accommodation outside of their local area has continued to increase, rising 15% year-on-year to 21,400 or 29% of all homeless households.
Homeless Link's Chief Executive, Rick Henderson, commented:
“The growing number of households being placed in temporary accommodation is extremely concerning. This insecure and often poor standard accommodation not only comes at a cost to the public purse, but also has a damaging impact on the people who live in it. It is shameful that our country’s systems are failing its most vulnerable people, with those whose tenancies come to an end unable to find a home that they can afford.
“While some additional funding has been allocated and moves are being made to bring in legislation that focuses on preventing homelessness, people need help right now. Local authorities are being stretched to their limit; the Government must consider what more it can do to rectify the situation, including incentivising the building of more genuinely affordable homes.”
Compared to Q3 2015, the latest statistics show that in Q3 2016:
- The number of applications increased 1.5%
- The number of acceptances increased 2%
- The rate of acceptance was 51%, unchanged
- Homelessness due to the loss of an assured shorthold tenancy remained the biggest cause of homelessness at 32%
- Use of temporary accommodation rose by 9%
- The number of households in temporary accommodation outside of their local area continued to increase, rising 15% year-on-year to 21,400 or 29% of all homeless households.
See Homeless Link’s interactive data tool for more figures on statutory homelessness.
The Government statistics for Statutory homelessness and homelessness prevention and relief, England: July to Sept 2016 can be found here.
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