Rent rises will price families out of homes

TO LET: One of the many sign boards in South Holland.
TO LET: One of the many sign boards in South Holland.

A generation will be priced out of a home as rent rises go through the roof in South Holland and the rest of Lincolnshire.

The warning comes from The National Housing Federation, which says rents in the East Midlands are outstripping the national average and are set to move even further out of reach.

It says South Holland’s average private monthly rent of £474 is set to soar by 53 per cent (£253) by 2020 – six per cent more than the England average.

Chris Hobson, the federation’s East Midlands lead manager, said: “A whole generation is now at risk of being priced out of renting a home, let alone buying one, and that has a huge impact on people’s lives.

“Being unable to afford the homes they need stops people from moving for work and it even deters young couples from starting families.”

The federation says renting becomes unaffordable when payments are above 35 per cent of income. In South Holland private rents are 36 per cent of average income while the rate in South Kesteven is 41 per cent and in Boston Borough it’s 45 per cent.

The federation’s report Home Truths says the cost of renting in England has risen by 37 per cent over the last five years – and 417,830 more working people now depend on housing benefits to help them keep a roof over their heads, which is an 86 per cent increase since 2009.

District council leader Gary Porter says Government subsidy goes to the person in the form of housing benefit rather than to the social housing pot which would allow more homes to be built.

He believes rent rises are partly fuelled by benefits but more by banks refusing to lend for mortgages – banks have turned down applications worth 227billion this year.