This is just 4 out of 508 homes surveyed.
Local Housing Allowance (LHA) is the payment to private tenants who are entitled to benefits because they are disabled, on low pay or not in work. Research has been published on whether this level of payment is sufficient to allow people to afford accommodation in the private rented sector.
In Milton Keynes only 0.79% of properties in the private rented sector are affordable. The research for the National Housing Federation looked at 508 properties and found only 4 were affordable to people who received Housing Benefit or the Housing Element of Universal Credit.
Cllr Nigel Long said:“The private rented sector in Milton Keynes, which is substantial, is of no help to many people on low incomes or who are disabled or not in work. They just cannot afford the rents.”
Cllr Long added:“What the 2010 Coalition Government did was reduce the level at which LHA was set and now 9 years on we see the consequence of his is that less than 1% of private lets are affordable to people who need help with their rents. Basically the rents are above LHA level and so are not affordable.”
On Friday 11th October there were 896 households in temporary accommodation. The principle reason why they are homeless is because of being evicted from private lets. They are mostly evicted because the private landlords want to increase rents. Yet rents are already unaffordable to people in receipt of LHA.
Cllr Long concluded: “There is a historic lack of affordable housing in Milton Keynes. This is at the heart of the homelessness crisis facing Milton Keynes. The private rented sector cannot fill the gap because, as the National Housing Federation show, less than 1% of private lets are affordable. The only answer is to build more council houses that are let at social rents so disabled people, those on low pay and those not in work can access secure housing. That is what Milton Keynes Council is doing. We have over 500 homes in the pipeline to be built. I just wish Government would help us more with the funding of these new homes.”