Briefing: Living Rent Homes

By: Marcus McPhillips  Published: May 2017


The next government should commit to an ambitious target of building half a million living rent homes over the next parliament. This would meet the needs of a large proportion of private renters who are unable to afford shared ownership and unlikely to secure a social tenancy.

Summary

Hard pressed renters are being badly let down by the current broken housing market. The next government urgently needs to commit to building 500,000 living rent homes to give a hand-up to working renters. Genuinely affordable living rents backed by long-term security would boost living standards to give renters breathing space for today, and hope for the future.

Shelter proposes that a living rent for low earning renters would be set with at a level which is affordable to low income households. To achieve this rents should be benchmarked to the 30th percentile of local earnings: a genuinely affordable rent would be set at a third of this level, meaning that a typical low income household would pay around a third of their income on rent.

Institutional landlords would be able to offer long-term stable rental contracts, ending the reliance on short-term tenancies. Shelter recommends ten-year tenancies to provide long-term security for those raising families, as well as a reasonable period in which someone may attempt to increase their earnings or savings in order to access homeownership.

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