Briefing: General Debate on Housing

By: Poppy Terry  Published: March 2019


Briefing ahead of the General Debate on Housing, which is being held after the Spring Statement.

Summary

For generations, social housing played a vital role in meeting the housing needs of ordinary people. However, a steep decline in social housebuilding has contributed to a huge increase in private renting as more and more people cannot afford to buy a home, as well as rising homelessness. Government is currently spending billions of pounds a year on housing benefit, much of which goes to private landlords, while councils are spending hundreds of millions on temporary accommodation for homeless households.

Shelter is calling on the government to make an ambitious, long-term commitment to building social housing. This would not only be a more efficient use of public funds, but would provide many with the affordable, secure housing they currently have no chance of accessing. This would be supported with greater land reform to combat the inflation of the cost of land, which slows developments.

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