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Small sites must deliver social housing
Small sites must deliver social housing

Here at Shelter, we want to see the introduction of reforms that will help deliver more social housing.

Planning reforms have a role to play in this. Especially reforms that provide the system with strength, greater clarity and, crucially, can empower the system to secure more high-quality social housing.

But, as highlighted in the first blog in our series on the planning system, planning deregulation is not the way forward. This is something the blogs will explain in more detail, … Read more

One paycheque away from losing their home
One paycheque away from losing their home

Every month is a struggle for mum of three Joanna. Despite working as a dinner lady at a local primary school, her paycheque is nowhere near enough to cover her rent and pay for food, bills, and all the other costs associated with supporting a family.

‘It’s a constant battle trying to make things work,’ Joanna tells Shelter. ‘When I go to the supermarket, the first place I’m looking is in the reduced section. This is normal to me. It’s … Read more

Renters want rent control – and it’s not just about the money
Renters want rent control – and it’s not just about the money

There’s no doubt that private renters are being hit hard by the housing emergency. With rents on the rise and the prospect of eviction hanging over our heads, it’s no surprise there’s an appetite for something to be done. Are rent controls the answer? What do renters themselves think?

A new study by the Fabian Society gives an insight into what renters think about when we talk about controlling rents – and it isn’t necessarily what you’d think.

The study, … Read more

We must call time on permitted development rights for new housing
We must call time on permitted development rights for new housing

Planning reform is on government’s agenda. The new Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick, has said he’s interested in ‘ways in which we can further liberalise and improve the planning system’.

In the launch of our housing planning blog series last week, we set out why we want to see planning reforms that will deliver high-quality social housing at scale within well-planned neighbourhoods. However, we also outlined why planning reform in the form of deregulation is not the way forward.

Our planning … Read more

Planning for our future: how important is the planning system for social housing?
Planning for our future: how important is the planning system for social housing?

Few topics in housing prompt such a polarising range of responses as planning. For some, the planning system is an anathema, the single greatest barrier to solving our national housing emergency. For others, proper planning is the key to solving that housing emergency, the way that we guide development to ensure it works for local communities.

Shelter, it’s fair to say, sits closer to the second school of thought.

That’s not to say that we can’t see room for reform … Read more

Will you keep a good thing going?
Will you keep a good thing going?

Paddy turned his life around, going from homelessness and addiction to working for Shelter. This happened because of Shelter’s peer mentoring programme. Now we need your help to keep a good thing going, by supporting this programme so that more people can help themselves to get off the street.

Paddy was living on the streets of Birmingham for five years and had a serious addiction to heroin and alcohol. Now he works for Shelter helping people with the problems he … Read more

No Help to Buy
No Help to Buy

With the new government publicly renewing their ambition to see more people owning their own home, we’re reviewing the main policy tool recent governments have used to try and achieve this.

Since 2013, Help to Buy has been the flagship housing policy to make ownership a reality for households dissatisfied with the private rental sector – the only alternative given the current level of social housing supply. Through it, government has funded around £12.5bn in equity loans, resulting in around … Read more

9-year-old Lovisa to cycle 100 miles to fight homelessness
9-year-old Lovisa to cycle 100 miles to fight homelessness

9-year-old Lovisa is doing her bit to fight homelessness with her very own Home2Shelter bike ride, an 100 mile sponsored cycle from her home in Great Blakenham, Suffolk, to Shelter’s London headquarters.

Lovisa is passionate about cycling and the freedom it gives her and will be accompanied on her bike ride by her Dad, Jamie.

‘Having seen the challenges met by those facing homelessness, Lovisa felt lucky to have a home, and was moved to do something to help,’ Jamie … Read more

The five-week wait is five weeks too long
The five-week wait is five weeks too long

Yesterday, we published a report on how the people who use our services have been impacted by Universal Credit (UC). This highlights the issues the introduction of UC has caused, drawing on the voices and experiences of people affected, as well as in depth analysis of the data they have provided. Our findings have helped inform our key recommendations for moving forwards, so if the newly re-appointed Secretary of State for Department for Work and Pensions, Amber Rudd, needs some … Read more

From the Frontline: the ongoing impact of welfare reform
From the Frontline: the ongoing impact of welfare reform

The consequences of the broken housing safety net are laid bare in our new report, From the Frontline. This shines a light on the thousands of people we help every year who are being pushed to the point of crisis due to the continued impact of welfare reform and the introduction of Universal Credit (UC).

The freeze to Local Housing Allowance (LHA), which is housing benefit for those renting privately, is forcing people to make the impossible choice between … Read more

Parents raising children in box containers shows the severity of the housing emergency
Parents raising children in box containers shows the severity of the housing emergency

A safe, secure, and affordable home is the basis of a good childhood. It’s a fundamental human need and that means it should be a right. But for tens of thousands of families across the country this right is denied, as the appalling human cost of our national housing emergency continues to grow.

At Shelter, our services hear all too often from people struggling at the sharp end of the housing crisis. Like the 18-month-old whose developmental milestones were not … Read more

One year of campaigning against DSS discrimination
One year of campaigning against DSS discrimination

August 2018 marked the launch of our DSS discrimination campaign. It’s an issue we were repeatedly seeing highlighted as one of the most consistent and pernicious problems our clients were encountering.

Our advisers spend hours every week desperately searching for properties within our clients’ price-range, only to then have the options reduced further or eliminated completely by ‘no DSS’ policies. Seeing this clause on adverts for privately rented properties means that if you receive some or all of your income … Read more