Shelter calls the Budget missed opportunity to ‘build back better’

Posted 03 Mar 2021

Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter, said: "The pandemic has left far more people on the brink of homelessness than homeownership. Sadly, the mortgage guarantee announced by the Chancellor is pure window dressing. Research shows it won’t help most renters and has no hope of turning ‘Generation Rent’ into ‘Generation Buy’.

"Two thirds of private renters have no savings at all, and there is no way they can scrape together the cash needed to afford a 5% deposit, nor do they have the kind of income that would support a huge mortgage. It is not fair to peddle people pipe dreams.

"The government should be looking at meaningful solutions to the housing crisis, which is causing misery for millions, not reaching for political soundbites. The only way to solve this emergency in the long-term is to invest in many more social homes that people can afford to live in.”

Key Statistics on Housing Affordability:

  • The average house price for a first-time buyer in England is £224,600. A 5% deposit on a home of this value would be £11,200 and typically require a household income of £59,300.

  • The average house price in England is £269,200. A 5% deposit on a home of this value would be £13,500 and typically require a household income of £71,000.

  • The typical median income of a renting household in England is just £20,911.

  • According to the government’s latest English Housing Survey, 61% of renters say they have no savings.

Notes to editors:

  • All house prices come from HM Land Registry December 2020 UK house price index release; prices and deposits have been rounded to the nearest hundred.

  • The household income requirements quoted above are based on the typical loan to income ratio of 3.6 – that is a mortgage lender will typically allow a household to borrow 3.6 times their gross household income for a home purchase.

  • Median incomes for renters (all renters; private and social renters) comes from the 2018/19 English Housing Survey, Annual Gross Income of HRP and Partner.