Homelessness changes: more evidence on how it really works in Wales

Last week, following the first parliamentary inquiry into homelessness for ten years, a cross-party committee of MPs identified the principal cause of homelessness as the cost and availability of housing.

The Committee also recommended that a vital component in addressing homelessness is making sure that the support given to those at risk of homelessness, and to people not assessed as in ‘priority need’ for rehousing, is meaningful.

The report welcomed the aspirations of new legislation introduced in Wales last yearRead more

How to buck a Brexit slowdown and build 1m homes

Come May 2020 what will Theresa May’s government look back on with pride and what will it look back on with regret?  Depending on the choices made at this early stage housing has the potential to fall squarely into either the ‘pride’ or ‘regret’ column. At Shelter, in our 50th year, we want housing to become a source of pride for our country, not a chronic weakness.

Today we’ve published a new paper looking at how the government can meet … Read more

Shameless Olympics tie-in: how many medals would Team GB need to have won to keep pace with house prices?

All anyone is going to be talking about for the next few days is Team GB’s success at the Olympics. And why not? The last two weeks have reminded us how much we love dancing horses, people who run very fast and four person kayaks.

So in the tradition of single issue organisations everywhere, we have our very own shameless Olympics house prices tie-up question: how many medals would Team GB have had to win in Rio to keep pace … Read more

Help to Buy ISA: the real scandal

Over the weekend the Telegraph reported that there is a Help to Buy ISA “scandal” because “first-time buyers will not be able to use it on an initial deposit on their new home”. As you’d expect, this prompted an angry reaction from some of the 500,000 people who’ve taken out an ISA in the hope of using the government’s bonus towards their deposit. But is this all as scandalous as it sounds?

The Help to Buy ISA

The Help to … Read more

Time for the Government to tackle homelessness

What’s causing the inexcusable increase in homelessness in 21st century England?  Why are families having to bring up children in homeless hostels and other temporary accommodation?  Why are we seeing increasing numbers of rough sleepers in our towns and cities?

Today, a cross-party committee of MPs has set out very clearly that the principal cause is the cost and availability of housing.

The DCLG Select Committee, in its first inquiry into homelessness for 10 years, has published a report that … Read more

As a landlady, I can see what needs to change in our rental market

We recently received the following guest blog from a Shelter supporter, Maureen, and we thought we’d share it:

I have been a landlord/lady on and off for some time, and I cannot believe the ‘market’ value of my studio flat in Camden Town. Originally, when I first started letting it out, I could not bring myself to ask the going rate for it – it’s an attractive place but it’s only one room, though with a separate kitchen, and its … Read more

The vile exploitation of ‘free rent for sex’ ads

This post was co-authored by John Bibby and Poppy Terry

 “Homeless Females ? Free Rent House Share (Hillingdon)

“As the ad states if there is any Homeless Single stunning Females who are out there seeking to save or seeking to be re-housed by a friendly genuine white britisg guy then look no further I offer a Genuine offer to any young single hot sexy female of any nationality or culture to house share with me free rent free food drinks … Read more

Working families on the edge need the security of a safety net

Yesterday we published figures showing how vulnerable working families are to job loss. One in three working families told us they could not afford to pay their rent or mortgage for more than a month if they lost their job.

It’s not surprising that so many families feel ill-equipped for the proverbial rainy day. Nearly half of parents told us that housing costs were the biggest strain on their budgets and we know from previous research that nearly half of Read more

Is the increase in private renters a lifestyle choice we should come to accept?

Last week, the Resolution Foundation found that home ownership is at its lowest in 30 years. In fact, home ownership is now comparable with the European countries where we traditionally see renting as the norm.

This drop in home ownership comes as no surprise to us here at Shelter – it’s something that we have been talking about for a long time. Nor will it come as a shock to our new government; Theresa May highlighted in her first statementRead more

Affordable housing: “affordable for who”?

Every time I hear the term “affordable housing” being used – whether in a conversation with friends, family, Shelter clients or in a focus group – the same comment is always made: “yes, but affordable for who…?”* Usually, the phrase is accompanied by a rolling of the eyes, or a shaking of the head.

Most of us who care about housing would agree with the sentiment that a lot of so-called “affordable” homes just aren’t. However it’s also vital that … Read more

The heat is on: new map illustrates the shortage of housing advice

The publication, last week, of the Law Society’s interactive map of legal aid provision for housing advice provides a stark illustration of how little free legal advice is now available to people facing a serious problem with their housing. It graphically illustrates the problem of advice deserts that Shelter sees every day.

Far too few people are getting the access to justice that they are entitled to and that can help them stay in their homes. And it is getting … Read more

Falling homeownership won’t be stopped by current schemes

Home-ownership is now at its lowest for 30 years, according to new analysis by the Resolution Foundation. This matters because the vast majority of people want the security of owning – both financially and because it gives longer term stability for families than private renting.

Homeownership looks likely to keep falling when you dig below the numbers and look at the proportion of buyers with mortgages, versus those who are mortgage free. The majority of homeowners are now older … Read more