8 million people one paycheque away from losing their home

11 April 2013

A man carrying a box

One in three people could not pay their rent or mortgage for more than a month if they lost their job, new figures from Shelter show today.

Of those questioned in the YouGov survey:

  • 35%, equivalent to 8.6 million people, could not pay their rent or mortgage from their savings for more than a month.
  • 18%, equivalent to 4.4 million people, wouldn’t be able to pay their rent or mortgage at all if they couldn’t secure a new job immediately.

The research reveals families with children are in the most precarious situation. 43% could not pay for their home for more than a month, and nearly a quarter (23%) could not meet their payments at all.

In total, 3.9 million British families may be just one paycheque away from losing their family home.

As Government cuts take effect and the squeeze on family budgets means saving becomes ever harder, Shelter is bracing itself for a surge in demand from people at risk of becoming homeless.

Campbell Robb, Chief Executive of Shelter said: ‘These figures paint an alarming picture of a nation where the buffer between having a home and potentially becoming homeless is a single paycheque.

‘Millions are living on the edge of a crisis, only secure in their homes for a matter of weeks. At the same time, support for people who have lost their homes is being stripped away - it’s easy to see why every fifteen minutes, another family in England finds themselves homeless.’

Worried about paying your rent or mortgage? Get advice from Shelter >

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