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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 August 2015

Rent hikes make housing unaffordable

Photo Paul Mattsson

Photo Paul Mattsson

Between June 2014 and 2015, average private rents in Britain increased by 2.5%, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The biggest price hike of 3.8% was in London, with Scotland experiencing a 2.1% rise.

Meanwhile, the flatshare website Spareroom.co.uk found that rent in every London postcode is now "unaffordable" for those workers on the 'living wage' of £9.15 an hour.

Spareroom's survey found that incomes of those on the London living wage, after tax, amounts to £293 a week. Yet the average weekly room rent in the last year rose by 6% (higher than the ONS figure) to £164.31, ie 56% of disposable income.

Astonishingly, published research shows that a renter in Camden Town, working in Liverpool Street, would be £403 a month better off if they moved to Madrid and commuted back!

One adverse effect on public services of the lack of affordable housing in London has been a 66% rise in the number of ambulance workers leaving the service over the last three years.

The number of both private and council tenants with rent arrears is also growing as a result of rent hikes and the 'bedroom tax'. A National Debtline spokesperson said: "We have seen the proportion of clients seeking help with rent arrears double from 6% in 2007 to nearly 13% in 2014."

The housing crisis is a toxic mix of unregulated private rents, council housing sell-offs (now extended to housing associations), the bedroom tax, and the lowest number of houses both public and private being built since the 1920s.

Even the Tory leader of Westminster council reckons that newly built council homes in regeneration schemes are likely to be sold off by boroughs because their location makes them 'too valuable'.

However, this government, which represents the super-rich, refuses to reinstate rent controls, invest in council housing, and end the price speculation in land and property by 'investors' (which include properties bought by money laundering criminals and sanctions-avoiding oligarchs, etc, using front companies).

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In The Socialist 5 August 2015:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Jeremy Corbyn: Thousands rally to anti-austerity appeal

Health trusts told 'don't fill posts' - stop NHS cuts!

Abolish the House of Lords!

Police spying: campaigners demand full disclosure

Fiddling finance capital in the dock

Rent hikes make housing unaffordable

Them & Us


Socialist Party features

Human tragedy of Calais crisis

Personal care budgets: more choice for service users?


Socialist history

Hiroshima - 70 years on


International socialist news and analysis

China at a turning point


Workplace news

Kill the bill! Join the NSSN lobby of the TUC

National Gallery strike: all-out art action

Rail shutdowns step up: second tube strike, 72-hour Great Western walkout

National Museum Wales strike against pay cut

Traffic wardens strike for sick pay

Workplace news in brief

Fighting the anti-union laws


Socialist Party comments and reviews

Bath: behind the elegant walls


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Campaigning to end the housing crisis

Lincoln demonstrators defy far-right threats

TUSC lobbies 'Labstainer'

Thousands gather at Leeds Pride

Socialist Party Summer Camp


 

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Related links:

Housing:

triangleStop eviction of Camden homeless collective

triangleSouthampton West Socialist Party: The crisis in housing

triangleEssex cuts racket must end

triangleEviction resistance on the march in Waltham Forest

triangleWaltham Forest: Campaign unites families facing eviction

Council:

triangleNewham City Farm - closed with no consultation

triangleBrighton Green and Labour cuts - workers and communities fight back

triangleRestore Cardiff's slashed services

triangleCoventry bin strikers lobby strike-breaking Labour council

London:

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: Crisis in the Ukraine

triangleLondon Socialist Party women's meeting

triangleTube workers strike in defence of pay, pensions and conditions

Tax:

triangleCut our fuel bills - nationalise energy

triangleCost of living crisis

Rents:

triangle'I'm dreading trying to live on a nurse's salary'

Bedroom tax:

triangleSelf-isolation class divide: decent homes for all!

Britain:

triangleTories instruct teachers to wipe Britain's real history

Liverpool:

triangleBus services under threat

Sanctions:

triangleBelarus: Lukashenko's desperate attempt to silence opposition

Homes:

triangleNews in brief

Scotland:

triangleSocialist Party Scotland: Socialist change to end climate change

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