Lancaster sees rise in number of rented homes as campaign group calls for end to 'no fault' evictions

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More people are renting privately in Lancaster than a decade ago, new figures show.

The latest figures from the 2021 census of England and Wales come as a housing campaign group calls on the Government to come good on its promise of a better deal for private tenants.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics show 13,029 households were renting privately in Lancaster when the census was carried out in March 2021 – 21.7% of the 59,978 households in the area.

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At the time of the previous census in March 2011, 18.9% of households were private renters – meaning that the share has increased over the past decade.

More people are private renters in Lancaster than a decade ago.More people are private renters in Lancaster than a decade ago.
More people are private renters in Lancaster than a decade ago.

Across England and Wales there are now five million private renters (20.3% of households), up from 3.9 million (16.7%) in 2011.

Dan Wilson Craw, deputy director of the housing campaign Generation Rent, said these tenants are “paying high rents to private landlords, face a much greater risk of living in a poor quality home, and live with the threat of eviction at short notice”.

He added that despite the Government recognising the need for reforms in the sector – such as abolishing so called 'no-fault' evictions – it is yet to introduce legislation to properly support private tenants.

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Shelter, a charity that tackles homelessness, said the "only lasting solution" to the housing crisis is to build more social homes.

It pointed to a waiting list of more than a million households for social housing across England, saying that the social housing is lost every year to sales and demolitions.

Polly Neate, chief executive of the charity, said: “It’s time for the Government to invest in a new generation of good quality social homes with genuinely affordable rents pegged to local incomes.”

Across England and Wales, there has been little change in the amount of social housing in the past decade – while the number of households in social homes increased from 4.1 million to 4.2 million, the proportion actually fell, from 17.6% of households to 17.1%.

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A spokesperson for the Department of Levelling up, Housing and Communities said: “Ensuring a fair deal for renters remains a priority for the government, that’s why we will deliver on our commitment to abolish Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions and introduce a Renters Reform Bill in this Parliament."