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HOUSING campaigners slammed Chancellor Jeremy Hunt today for jacking up the rent — by a whopping 18 per cent — on an apartment he owns.
The millionaire landlord, who is preparing to deliver the Autumn Statement on Wednesday as millions struggle with the cost of living, hiked up the rent by £300 a month last August — almost twice the rate of inflation at the time.
An investigation, carried out by the Daily Mirror with the Led By Donkeys campaign group, found that tenants at the Southampton flat had been paying £1,700 a month.
After they moved out, Mr Hunt capitalised on a bidding war which drove the price up to £2,000.
Acorn tenants’ union head organiser Nick Ballard said: “It’s no surprise to see some landlord MPs, not least a government minister, raking in the money from rent increases whilst urging pay restraints on everyone else during the cost-of-living crisis.
“The market clearly isn’t regulating itself, and that’s why the government needs to bring forward measures to make sure nobody is kicked out of their home due to cost-of-living rent debt.”
A spokesperson for the London Renters Union said: “It’s a direct conflict of interest that the politicians charged with fixing the economy are profiting off of inflation-busting price hikes.
"While ordinary people are told to accept real-terms pay cuts, Hunt is cashing in on the cost of living crisis and pouring fuel on the fire of inflation. The housing crisis is the direct result of corporate greed and profiteering.
"We need politicians to start listening to the voices of renters rather than their own wallets and take action to cap rising rents now.”
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