With the election done and dusted you’d be forgiven for thinking from some of the rhetoric flying around that the question of Britain’s direction for the next five years is set in stone. In reality nothing could be further from the truth and Generation Rent is already looking forward to continuing our vital work in alerting the government and opposition to the question of housing.
In the month that saw the election we also saw campaigners occupying the space outside the Central Library, and later in St Anne’s Square, to protest about homelessness.
Conservative Policy Freezes Renters Out
What does the fate of The Titanic have to do with the British Housing Crisis? The Captain of that vast ship was warned of impending disaster well in advance, but ignored all warnings, instead choosing to stay his course even though it meant condemning the ship’s occupants to their doom.
The newly reinstated Conservative Government has cast itself in the same captain-as-executioner role, blithely ignoring the escalation of the housing crisis, and heading for a collision with the ‘PRS-berg; a collision so deadly in implication, its fall-out it cannot be underestimated.
Government has no idea of the breadth and depth of the Private Rented Sector, like the iceberg of lore, it hides below the surface. A case in point is that “Newham Council estimated there were 4-5,000 landlords operative in its borough, but by March 2015 over 22,500 landlords had come forward to be issued with licenses. Newham Council made an under-estimate of 18,500 landlords, in other words, there were roughly 80% more landlords operating than the Council knew about.
The unknown quantity of the sector, has allowed it so far, to ‘absorb’ much of the overflow of the population forced out of previously council owned homes, and out of their mortgages, as austerity measures have taken precedence over human rights. Please note that I use the term ‘absorb’ loosely here, to delineate hidden homelessness, concealed families, and illegal properties such as over-crowded houses and unregistered HMO’s. Apparently this state of affairs is more preferable to our country’s leaders, than say, a committed re-haul of the failing housing programme, and investing in building some more homes? Is it really our best option to continue to allow over £9 Billion of tax payer’s money to be sucked into the housing-benefit whirlpool?Read more