Back in July, we looked at the steps the government has been taking to tackle the stigma associated with social housing. We’ve also written several Advantage blog posts about the drive to build more affordable housing in the UK over the coming years.
However, it’s not all rosy in the world of social housing, with Inside Housing reporting that: Repairs and maintenance work on social housing has plummeted to a 20-year low, according to new figures.
A total of £7.1bn was spent on repairs and maintenance in the social housing sector in 2018, a fall of 24% since 1997, according to research by public sector procurement specialist Scape Group.
The report, titled The State of our Estates, found that in 1997, 32% of all housing repairs and maintenance work was carried out in the social sector, compared with 25% in 2018.
The analysis, based on government figures, also found that 36% of repairs and maintenance work in private and public sector homes in England over the past 20 years took place in London and the South East.
The average spend on repairs and maintenance was highest in London at £1,481 per property, compared with £530 in the North East.
Mark Robinson, chief executive of Scape Group, said that the amount being spent is “not enough” and that “everyone deserves a home fit for purpose”.
“A concerning number of people live in substandard homes, which is affecting not only their physical and mental well-being, but their quality of life.”
In the same week that the figures regarding the fall in repairs and maintenance work on social housing were revealed, the Advantage team heard some more encouraging news from Manchester. Place North West reported that: Manchester City Council has detailed its proposal to grow its affordable housing offer from 5,000 to 6,400 by 2025.
The report, submitted to the economic scrutiny committee, is in response to the increasing number of people on Manchester’s housing register, which currently has 15,000 households, 5,000 of which are classified as ‘in housing need’.
The Advantage team will continue to look at the picture for social housing in the UK – from ambitious targets to rising and falling budgets and we’ll also bring you the latest news from the construction sector as a whole. Thank you for reading. We’ll be back soon with more industry news!
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