Homelessness in England 2021

By: Charlie Berry
Published: December 2021

Homelessness in England 2021

This report gives the numbers behind Shelter’s December 2021 media story on the total number of people who are recorded as homeless in England.

Homelessness comes in many varied forms and is extremely difficult to
accurately count. With this work we attempt to estimate a snapshot of the
number of people homeless on one given night in 2021. The types of homelessness
that we count in this work are:

  • People who have been accepted as homeless and now live in temporary accommodation arranged by their local council

  • People who have been accepted as homeless and now live in temporary accommodation arranged by themselves or are living ‘homeless at home’ – meaning that they are legally homeless because it is not reasonable for them to continue to live in their home, but they are yet to be moved into temporary accommodation

  • People who are sleeping on the streets

  • Single people who are homeless and living in hostel accommodation, but who are not counted amongst those in the statutory homelessness figures above

  • People who are owed a duty under the Children’s Act and are living in temporary accommodation that has been arranged by Social Services