Private Renting Solutions

Thank you for your email regarding the campaign ‘Home, No Less Will Do’ relating to housing solutions for homeless and vulnerable people. I am especially concerned with the wellbeing of those in our constituency and what can be done to improve the current provision.

The Government have introduced a £1 billion ‘Build to Rent’ fund, which has contracted investment worth over £636 million to deliver more than 5,600 high-quality homes specifically for private rent. This has been supported through the £3.5 billion Private Rented Sector Housing Guarantee Scheme, which will increase the stream of investment in new private rented sector housing. Moreover, the recent Housing White Paper contained measures to support further Build to Rent developments.

As you may know, Ministers made a significant investment of £14 million from 2010 to 2016, working with Crisis, to develop a programme for single people to access private rented accommodation. Through this programme 9,000 people were helped, and 90% of those maintained a tenancy for more than six months.

In addition, £100 million is being invested to deliver low-cost accommodation for those ready to move on from a homelessness crisis, including rough sleepers leaving hostel accommodation. Details of the bidding process outside London will be announced by the Homes and Communities Agency in the spring.

You may also be interested to know that the Government has established a private rented sector affordability and security working group, which includes Shelter, Crisis, Generation Rent and landlord and letting agent representatives. Policy proposals to help vulnerable people and low income households to access and maintain tenancies in the sector were discussed at recent meetings of this group, and it is now finalising its report.

Homelessness continues to be one of my priorities, along with the Government, to ensure that we are doing more to support those in greatest need. You may not be aware that I have tasked a member of my Constituency staff to look at this issue and other Social Responsibility issues around West Cornwall to ensure we do the very best for Constituents.

You can follow the debate held in Westminster Hall on 8th February, that you mentioned in your email, here:

Thank you once again for contacting me, please do not hesitate to get in contact with me if you require any further information.

Kind regards,

Derek Thomas MP

For St Ives, West Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.