Thousands of families being moved out of Barnet due to housing shortage

By Dave Speck in Local People

Barnet Council’s ruling Conservative Group has been accused of failing to meet targets in the provision of affordable housing - after figures revealed the council has rehoused more than 3,700 households outside the borough in the last five years.

Figures show the number of households being placed in temporary accommodation outside the borough is increasing year-on-year, from 143 in 2011/12 to 913 in 2015/16.

And a total of 459 households from Barnet have been moved out of London altogether since 2012.

Barnet Labour Group Deputy Leader Councillor Ross Houston said: "The figures show that the need for affordable homes is outstripping supply. Conservative-run Barnet Council is failing to deliver the number of affordable homes Barnet’s families need, or even to meet its own targets.

"The result is that thousands of families accepted as homeless by the council are having to be placed in temporary accommodation outside of the borough.

"Every time Barnet Council fails to deliver affordable housing they are failing local families who desperately need their help.”

2015/16 a total of 18 per cent of all new homes built in Barnet were classed as “affordable,” against a target of 40 per cent.

Meanwhile, lack of affordable housing has been a top concern in successive residents’ perception surveys in Barnet recent years.

Councillor Tom Davey, Chairman of the council’s Housing Committee, said Barnet had the seventh highest number of affordable homes among all London boroughs, and that, of the 4,788 new homes built over the last four years, 1,537 were “affordable,” which is a rate of 32 per cent.

He said: “Over the next decade we’re aiming to build 27,000 new homes, the most in outer London, with a range of social rent, affordable and market rate homes. Barnet Homes have already delivered 43 affordable for rent homes and will be building a further 320 affordable new homes with a £65m loan from the council.”

He added: “Almost two-thirds of households living in temporary accommodation are housed with Barnet, with 94 per cent within London. Only 6 per cent are placed out of London.”

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