Social Housing: Theresa May’s Legacy?
Social Housing: Theresa May’s Legacy?

Years from now, when the history of Theresa May’s record on housing is written, it will remain impossible to ignore the fire at Grenfell Tower.

Few events change the course of debate the way this did. In the two years since the fire, the public discourse on social housing has made a profound and welcome turn. But meaningful changes in policy have been much slower to come.

Today, people living in social housing are still being failed by poor regulation … Read more

Increasing housing supply can improve living standards for the squeezed middle
Increasing housing supply can improve living standards for the squeezed middle
Guest Blog – Thomas Aubrey, Centre for Progressive Policy

Housing costs over the last 20 years have been a real drain on household incomes. Indeed, this rise in prices for renters and owner occupiers has been responsible for more than a third of the rise in overall living costs. House prices have increased in the last two decades at a much faster rate than earnings, resulting in the median house price to earnings ratio roughly doubling. But these costs have … Read more

A two-pronged plan for better social housing
A two-pronged plan for better social housing

Guest blog by Rob Gershon, Housing Quality Network’s Residents’ Lead Associate

It might sound odd to say, but the Shelter commission was not a typical housing commission. It was made up of a diverse group of people from different backgrounds and perspectives, including politicians, tenants, community group activists (like me), but none from the traditional housing world.

The long and the short of the homebuilding bit of the report is that the commission agreed we needed more homes, … Read more

Housing’s big week: will the Rough Sleeping Strategy and Social Housing Green Paper deliver?
Housing’s big week: will the Rough Sleeping Strategy and Social Housing Green Paper deliver?

Last week was an important week for housing policy.

An important week for the thousands of men and women bedding down on our streets tonight; nearly 80,000 households going home to temporary accommodation; 1.2 million families waiting for their names to come to the top of the social housing waiting list and half a million social housing tenants without a decent home.

Rough sleeper strategy

On Monday, the Secretary of State published the Rough Sleeping Strategy, setting out the … Read more

No, lower land prices aren’t something to worry about
No, lower land prices aren’t something to worry about

Lowering the cost of land is a holy grail in trying to fix our housing crisis. Why? Because the high land prices that we see in our current speculative development system directly lead to less affordable housing, slow build-out and poor quality.

Recently, the Sunday Telegraph covered this issue with an article about a possible land price cap being introduced in the updated National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). What the Sunday Telegraph talks about isn’t a land price cap as … Read more

The English Housing Survey

Today saw the release of the English Housing Survey (EHS) – the most important source we have for understanding the housing crisis. This government survey collects details on the quality and conditions of the homes households live in. This includes the cost and affordability of those homes.

As the survey has been running for 50 years (in various forms), it’s an invaluable record of how the situation of English households has changed over time.

Home ownership down

An Englishman’s home … Read more

How much are the homes from Location, Location, Location episode 1 worth now?
How much are the homes from Location, Location, Location episode 1 worth now?

It’s hard to believe that Kirstie and Phil started presenting Channel 4’s Location, Location, Location way back in May 2000.

The first episode is well-worth a watch. Watch it to chuckle at the dated fashions and dodgy camerawork, if you must. But the main attraction is, of course, how unbelievably cheap all the properties are.

So as an experiment we tracked them all down to find out how much they are worth now.

The results are mind-boggling.

Inflation, inflation, Read more
Priced out and p*ssed off: Britain's forgotten middle

Britain’s forgotten middle. The 1.3 million-strong private renters who continually struggle to pay their rent and have little hope of ever buying their own home. These ‘hard-pressed private renters’ increasingly turn up at Shelter’s doors, looking for support with their housing and paying their rent. They’re the families we’re suggesting a new generation of living rent homes should be built for – with rents pegged to lower rates of pay in any given area that enable hard-pressed renters to reach … Read more

Why should the Government improve land market transparency?

The lack of transparency in the land market is a serious barrier to building more homes in England. Shelter is calling on the Government to open up all land data held by the public sector, to let innovation flourish, allow the market to work more efficiently, and get more homes built.

All markets need good quality information to work efficiently. Without this, buyers don’t know what to bid for goods or services, and sellers don’t know what to ask. Poor … Read more

Sponsoring the London Homelessness Awards 2016

We’re delighted to say that this year, we’re joining Crisis, the London Housing Directors and the London Housing Federation in sponsoring the London Homelessness Awards. Regarded as the UK’s leading homelessness awards, they highlight and celebrate innovation within the sector.

Everyone from registered social landlords, agency partnerships and public sector health organisations to housing and social services departments, and voluntary sector organisations are encouraged to enter.… Read more

Party Conferences: Taking the political temperature on housing

As the leaves of another party conference season are swept away, we take a look back at what it meant for housing.

First there was the Lib Dems in sunny Bournemouth. Housing featured as one of the three big themes of Tim Farron’s first conference speech as Lib Dem leader. Farron said it was watching the film ‘Cathy Come Home’ as a teenager that inspired him to get into politics. The film’s original screening in 1966 coincided with … Read more

A rent cap in name only

This blog was originally published as part of #BeyondtheBallot the Huffington Post UK’s alternative take on the UK General Election 2015. Visit the website to see the original post and join the debate.

A year ago to the day, Ed Miliband announced that a future Labour Government will legislate to make long-term tenancies the legal default. After calling for stable renting since 2012, Shelter welcomed this turning point.

On Sunday, this was repackaged a ‘cap on rents’.

Cue hysteria. … Read more