Why Hackney is building
Hackney is facing an unprecedented housing crisis. Today there are more than 13,000 families waiting for a Council home. More than 3,000 of these are living in bed and breakfasts, hostels and other unsuitable temporary accommodation.
Another 34,000 households are part of the borough’s ever-growing number of private renters, where rents have increased by more than a third since 2011.
Buying a home, for those who can afford it, now costs seventeen times the average household income.
Since 2010, the Government has provided no government funding to build Council housing, and although some funding is now available from the Mayor of London, it is barely a fraction of what is needed to build the thousands of genuinely affordable Council homes that we need most.
Severe Government restrictions prevent us reinvesting income from the forced sale of Council homes – known as Right to Buy – to build replacement homes. This is something we’ll continue to campaign against.
But, despite the challenges facing us, Hackney is building. Our cross-subsidy, direct-delivery approach will see us build around 2,000 new homes between 2018 and 2022.
More than half of these will be genuinely affordable – whether social rent council homes for those who need the most, low cost home ownership options for those struggling to get on the housing ladder, or new living rent homes that give private renters a more affordable way to rent a high-quality home while saving money towards a deposit or household bills.
With the lack of funding, these are paid for by building and selling some homes outright and renting a small number of homes at market rates.
And it goes beyond just housing. The Government has cut our core funding in half since 2010, and plans to wipe out another £30million by 2022. In the meantime, demand for our services continues to increase.
So building and selling some homes outright won’t just fund more than 1,000 genuinely affordable homes – they’re also paying for the high-quality facilities and infrastructure that residents in Hackney deserve, including three brand new secondary schools to meet the growing demand for school places, and a state-of-the-art leisure centre.