Londoners earning less than £52,000 can’t afford to rent

Londoners earning less than £52,000 can’t afford to rent

16:02 PM, 28th March 2012, About 12 years ago

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Renters in London need to earn around £52,000 to let a buy to let home, according to figures from homeless charity Shelter.

The charity reckons 65% of non-home-owning Londoners have given up hope of buying a property in the neighbourhood where they live.

Typical deposits for first-time buyers mount up to £84,000 and social housing is limited, leaving 23% of homes in the capital rented from buy to let landlords – up to 700,000 from 445,000 (15%) a decade ago.

The statistics are part of an ongoing campaign by the charity to lobby the next London mayor to act over housing.

Incumbent Boris Johnson, LibDem Brian Paddick and Labour hopeful Ken Livingston are head-to-head in the race to sit atop The Gherkin as the next London mayor, when the elections are held on May 3, 2012.

Shelter’s second London rent watch study calculates the capital is in crisis as prospective tenants have to take home around £3,500 a month to afford a two-bed flat – equivalent to £52,000 a year before tax.

This surges past £60,000 in eight Central London boroughs.

The charity claims rent rises in the capital topped 7% last year and that many families are paying between a third and half of their income as housing costs.

Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said: “These findings paint a worrying picture of thousands of families across the capital being stretched to the limit by the high cost of renting, praying they won’t be hit by another rent rise that could tip them over the edge.

“London’s renters will be looking to the next mayor to fix London’s out-of-control rental market, and give them some stability and predictability with their housing costs.”

Shelter suggest five year tenancy agreements with rent controls brokered by the new mayor would be a step forward for landlords and tenants.

Download the Shelter report

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