John Bibby

By John Bibby

Who rents has changed. It’s time the law caught up.

When our current renting laws were put together in 1988, the private rented sector looked very different from today.

The old stereotypes of the private tenant – the students who only needed a home for the uni term, or the single, childless, twenty-somethings sharing while they saved up to buy home – were closer to the truth in ’88. So it was less of a problem that the law promoted short-term renting, because many renters only needed to rent for … MORE...

Kate Webb

By Kate Webb

Learning the lessons on how to avoid rising repossessions

‘What does Brexit mean for you?’ Unsurprisingly, this has been a popular topic in newspapers of late, with much attention paid to the potential impact of Brexit on mortgage holders. In times of economic uncertainty many – understandably – fear that we’ll see a return to the sky high interest rates and repossessions that knocked homeowners during the 90s downturn.

But the experience of the more recent recession following 2008 gives us reason to be optimistic – adverse outcomes can … MORE...

Sara Mahmoud

By Sara Mahmoud

Theresa May is right to highlight families’ struggle with housing costs – but rent is the worry, not mortgages

Theresa May’s first speech as Prime Minister included a promise to empower ‘working class’ families. It was encouraging to hear her touch on how housing costs are a weight on households’ quality of life but this was reduced to a ‘worry about paying the mortgage’. Research from the Resolution Foundation confirms that it is in fact renters that have seen their incomes squeezed by housing costs the most. The new government now has an opportunity to offer genuine … MORE...

John Bibby

By John Bibby

Giving renters back control over their lives

It’s worth pausing for a moment on the promise Theresa May made in her first speech as prime minister. It’s a short speech in which she spoke about how tough it is for many families. So far, so ordinary. But it was the promise she made to those struggling families that was different. The government she leads, she said, “will do everything we can to give you more control over your lives.”

It was not a promise to make people’s … MORE...

Kevin Garvey

By Kevin Garvey

Shelter at 50: the razor thin gap between our history and present day housing conditions

Overcrowding and poor conditions were rife in 1960s Liverpool.


“At 6 Princes Avenue the house is in an appalling state of repair; broken windows, garbage all over the front yard, and no security as anybody can get in.

“A couple with their 5 children are all living in one room…They all sleep in one big bed behind a partition, making a room 4 ft wide. Seven people sleeping in one bed in a room 4 ft wide…They are on MORE...