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Number of rough sleepers rises by 27 per cent while over 100,000 in temporary accommodation

THE number of rough sleepers and those forced into temporary accommodation has risen for the second year in a row, according to government figures released today.

Those being forced to sleep on the streets increased by 27 per cent to 3,898 in 2023, over double the number of people recorded in 2010, when records began.

And the number of households living in temporary accommodation has increased by 10.3 per cent year on year, to 109,000 in 2023.

Independent Age head of policy and influencing Morgan Vine called the findings a scandal, pointing out that older people were among the hardest hit, with homelessness in older ages rising by 50 per cent in the last four years.

“With rents going up, and section 21 ‘no-fault eviction’ notices remaining common practice in England, there are too many reasons why older people can find themselves without a place to call home,” she said.

Section 21 evictions have surged by almost 50 per cent since pre-pandemic times, the figures show.

The Renters (Reform) Bill, which wants to stop landlords from kicking out tenants with just two months’ notice, continues to face delays.

The BBC revealed that the government is considering concessions to water down the legislation. 

The proposals include delaying Section 21 evictions until the policy’s impact on the courts system has been assessed and a requirement for tenants to live in a property for four months before leaving.

Renters’ Reform Coalition campaign manager Tom Darling said: “It seems basically everyone is calling for a stronger Renters Reform Bill except the government’s landlord backbenchers, and yet, outrageously, it seems they are the ones being listened to.”

More than 100 council leaders have written to Housing Secretary Michael Gove demanding that the stalled legislation be strengthened as well as “help to reduce the number of people claiming homelessness duties because of the end of a private rented sector tenancy.”

In 2023-24, councils in England are expected to spend £2 billion on temporary accommodation. 

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