Mayor Launches London Living Rent
London Mayor Sadiq Khan has launched “London Living Rent” this week – a new type of tenancy for low-to-middle-income households in newly-built homes with below-market rent.
London Living Rent homes will have rents based on third of average household incomes in each borough. New homes will be offered to low and middle-income households earning around £35,000 and £45,000, who are currently renting privately. This would see the rent for a two-bed flat drop below £1,000 – compared to average private rents of £1,450.
More details of the new programme will be released in the coming months.
Sadiq Khan said: “We know that fixing London’s housing crisis won’t happen overnight, and we need to do everything we can to help Londoners who are struggling to pay their rents. That’s why I’m working with housing associations and councils to build new homes for ‘London Living Rent’ – homes that will offer hard-working, low and middle-income families an alternative to renting privately so they can get by and save for a deposit.”
David Montague, Chief Executive of L&Q and the Chair of the G15 of London’s biggest housing associations, said: “We want to provide new homes in a way which doesn’t involve setting rents beyond the reach of ordinary Londoners. This can be achieved as part of a mainstream grant-funded affordable housing and regeneration programme in which housing associations retain flexibility over rents and asset management. A new agreement could include a move away from rent conversions on existing social rented homes where we agree that these homes are fit for purpose.”
Phil Glanville, Mayor of Hackney, has said that Hackney will be the first borough to build 500 homes for London Living Rent, and said: “Hackney is already building more social housing than anywhere else in the capital, but it’s also vital that there are more homes which Londoners on middle-incomes can afford to rent and buy. The London Living Rent will help people who work hard but are getting priced out of our city, which is why I’m proud that my first act as Mayor is to pledge that Hackney will be the first borough to see 500 homes built at this affordable level.”
London Assembly Member Sian Berry reacted to the Mayor of London manifesto pledge: “We will eventually need something more sophisticated than this to solve London’s housing crisis. There are lots of people who fall below average wages. An arbitrary definition based on a third of the local average income will leave many women and families with children still struggling. Any working people on lower than average incomes, very few of whom stand any chance of getting into social housing, also risk being left behind by this policy. London is becoming a place where it’s impossible for working people to live. I will keep pushing the Mayor to go further until we have a full thought out action plan to solve London’s unaffordability crisis.”