“Today’s announcement is a step in the right direction but more should be done to help meet the challenges renters and councils face."
Responding to the end of the Local Housing Allowance (LHA) freeze this April, which was first introduced by government in 2016, Cllr Richard Watts, Chair of the LGA’s Resources Board, said:
“Today’s announcement is a step in the right direction but more should be done to help meet the challenges renters and councils face. Since LHA rates were frozen in 2016 they have fallen, on average, to just the thirteenth percentile of market rents. This means that in many parts of the country there are no properties available to those entitled to full support with their housing costs.
“Without investing in LHA rates to cover the true costs of renting, the gap many people face between their incomes and the cost of rent risks continuing to push many into financial hardship, in-work poverty and homelessness, and further stretches councils’ housing, homelessness and local welfare services.
”Everyone deserves a decent, secure and affordable home. Councils want to work with the Government in order to deliver the security that tenants need and support households who need help to meet their housing costs. As part of its forthcoming Budget, the Government should restore the LHA rate to at least the 30th percentile of market rents, something the LGA has long called for.”