Inside the Affordable Housing Crisis in Cornwall as Shelter Warns of ‘National Emergency

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New government figures show that of the 2,590 newly built flats and houses made available by the government in Cornwall between the years 2015 and 2018, only 95 units (less than four percent) were made available for social rent.

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thesTThese 95 housing units were offered mainly by councils and not-for-profit organisations to those most in need of them.

Guideline target rents are determined by a national regime but social housing is the more affordable option.

Official statistics recognise other types of affordable homes may include affordable rent homes, where the overall accrued rent is barely 80 percent of the local market rate, intermediate rent homes which leverage subsidised rent to help occupants achieve a long-term view to purchasing a home, affordable homes sold at 20% below the market rate, and homes available under help-to-buy schemes.

Polly Neate, Chief Executive at Shelter, said: “Today’s figures show that the supply of social homes remains incredibly low.”

Cornwall Council has announced its intention to spend almost £40 million on 250 homes which would be used as temporary and emergency accommodation for the homeless. The details of the plan will be included in the report for the council’s economic growth and development overview and scrutiny committee which will be delivered this week.

The council is looking to provide £39.3 million to Cornwall Housing Limited, which it owns, to acquire the homes which would be used for emergency housing.