Charity claims under-25s ‘cannot afford private rent anywhere in England’

21 January 2021 | Renting

Charity claims under-25s ‘cannot afford private rent anywhere in England’

A charity claims that young people under 25 in full-time work across England are unable to afford privately rented accommodation anywhere in the country.

The research – conducted by the Yorkshire Building Society for the End Youth Homelessness charity – says the problem lies in a mix of causes including the size of the minimum wage and application of Universal Credit, as well as average rental costs.

The charity says for rent to be considered ‘affordable’ it should be 35 per cent or less of a person’s wage.  

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The index claims that for 21 to 24 year olds in England, working full-time and earning the minimum wage of £8.20 per hour, the average rental cost across the country is 71 per cent of their wage.

The most affordable places in England are Liverpool and Hull where the average private rental will cost 38 per cent of the salary.

The least affordable areas in England are in London; in parts of the capital rents are apparently the equivalent of 251 per cent of the salary of a 21 to 24 year old earning the minimum wage.

The charity says the data also reveals young people are potentially discouraged from working and living independently, since a full-time minimum wage job does not improve their financial circumstances in a more meaningful way than Universal Credit. 

“This new data lays bare the urgency of the housing dilemma faced by many young people across the country. The prohibitive costs associated with private renting are forcing the most vulnerable young people into desperate situations and COVID-19 has pushed even more young people closer to homelessness” says Nick Connolly, managing director of End Youth Homelessness.

This post has originally been featured in Letting Agent Today.