New research shows London councils are missing affordable housing targets in a big way

Sadiq Khan with construction work in the background
Support us and go ad-free

New research by joint Green Party leader and member of the London Assembly Sian Berry has revealed that:

33,424 affordable homes are missing across London as a result of London’s strategic planning policy target not being achieved.

Way short

London Mayor Sadiq Khan set a target that new developments should contain at least 35% ‘affordable’ homes. And the London Plan strategic target sits even higher at 40%.

London City Hall gave planning permission to 153,232 new homes between January 2016 and April 2018. If these new builds had hit the 40% target then they would have delivered 61,293 ‘affordable’ homes. But Berry’s research shows that only 27,869 of new homes were ‘affordable’.

And, as the below image shows, every London council is guilty of missing the target:

Social housing

The Canary has previously demonstrated that ‘affordable’ housing, i.e. homes that are rented at 80% of market rate or available through shared ownership, are categorically unaffordable for many. So creating more social housing is vital to tackling London’s housing crisis.

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

Berry’s research shows that if developers had met the targets for social housing they would have created 36,776 new social homes. Instead, they only built 7,451 new homes for social rent.

“A continuing betrayal”

Khan tweeted that “reversing the pitiful Tory legacy of failing to build genuinely affordable homes will take time”:

But in response to the findings, Berry stated:

With a large number of homes being planned across London, missing out on the affordable homes these developments should provide is a continuing betrayal. In just two years people who could fill a small town are being deprived of the chance to rent a home they can afford. I found hundreds of no-show homes in every borough, promised by policy but replaced when developments are signed off by luxury flats no-one on a normal wage could possibly own.

Every time developments that fail on affordability targets are signed off by councils, Londoners who need homes at reasonable rents lose out. The arguments about the housing crisis usually focus just on building more homes overall – but that isn’t the answer if what is being built ends up as luxury flats beyond reach for most Londoners.

She also called on Khan to:

do more to put pressure on the areas handling larger numbers of planning applications, as these are where the most affordable homes are going missing.

Londoners elected Khan on a platform of turning the city’s housing crisis around. But these revelations show that private interests continue to win out over public need.

Get Involved!

Read Sian Berry’s full report here.

– Support housing campaigns like Focus E15London Renters UnionGreater Manchester Housing ActionACORNStreets KitchenBalfron Social ClubSave Our Homes LS26Ledbury Action Group, and Generation Rent.

Featured image via GoodMorningBritain/YouTube

Support us and go ad-free

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us

Comments are closed