Although the main housing elements of today’s Queen’s Speech were reported in the week leading up to the announcement, it’s still very disappointing to have a housing bill outlined today that does nothing for the 11 million (and growing) private renters in this country.
This morning Greg Clark, the new Communities and Local Government Secretary, announced that the government would introduce a Housing Bill to extend the Right to Buy to tenants of housing associations - funded by the sale of high value council houses.
When faced with a housing crisis that forces millions of vulnerable people and would-be first time buyers into inadequate, insecure and expensive private rented homes, this is the last policy you would pick to fix it.
Ignoring renters could cost the Conservative Party the next election, according to new Generation Rent analysis.
On current trends, a third of parliamentary seats – including 96 held by the Tories – could be decided by the renter vote in 2020, but aside from vague plans to increase home ownership, the government currently has no plans to improve the lives of renters.
Will your MP help renters?
Generation Rent is calling on London’s 73 MPs to support reforms to improve the lives of the capital’s renters. Analysis of the election results shows that 34 of them could be voted out by renters in five years’ time.
Please ask yours to meet with us.
By the next General Election in 2020, there will be enough floating voters who rent to overturn the parliamentary majority in 34 London constituencies, currently held by 13 Conservatives, 20 Labour MPs and 1 Liberal Democrat.
Today, the Citizens Advice released a report, A Nation of Renters, which explores the doubling of the private rented sector over the past decade and its failure to adapt to the needs of renters.
Generation Rent announces today that director Alex Hilton is stepping down from his role. He will be leaving the organisation on Friday 15th May. Betsy Dillner, currently Community Campaigns Manager at Generation Rent, has been appointed Director in Alex’s place.
The dust is settling after the General Election and the government finds itself with a new ministerial team and a precarious majority. None of the manifestos offered a coherent solution to the housing crisis, but Generation Rent is committed to making it a priority for the new government.
We have offered them a strategy which will jump-start the house building industry and create a fair deal for people renting. Our “Queen’s Speech on housing” is sponsored by CWU Youth, the youth network of the CWU Trade Union.
The housing crisis cannot be fixed without proper leadership, effective regulation, a commitment to wean the country off rising house prices and investment in public housing. Our demands include a position of Secretary of State for Housing, protections for tenants when their landlord wants to sell the property, and a system of rent control and tax on landlords which would raise money for a public house building programme.
Our proposals are published as a poll from Survation finds that 63% of private renters want to leave private renting in the next five years but only a third of those think it’s likely to happen. That means that out of the UK’s 4.75m private renter households, 1.95m find themselves stuck in an unsuitable tenure.
Then ask your parliamentary candidates to support rent control
Looking for an affordable, stable place to live in London? Then you’ll have to move into the big house. Prison, that is.
If the numbers add up for him next week, Ed Miliband will be Prime Minister and he will start attempting to reform the private rented sector with longer tenancies and rent stabilisation. We've already spotted holes in his plans that would undermine attempts to give renters better protections, but at least we support reform in principle. Most of the ire directed at Labour since they announced the policy is from those who oppose any form of regulation of rents.