Poverty, evictions and forced moves

Anna Clarke, Charlotte Hamilton, Michael Jones and Kathryn Muir

This report explores the rapid increase in evictions over the last 12 years, and the impact these have had on the lives of tenants who lose their homes. The report was updated on 3 August 2017 to use updated and backdated data from the Ministry of Justice Statistics bulletin ‘Mortgage and Landlords Possession Statistics in England and Wales’.

The report shows:

  • the rented sector has grown in the past 12 years by nearly a half, and the number of tenants being evicted from their homes has grown by a third: 10,000 more tenants lost their homes in 2015 than in 2003
  • the number of tenants evicted by private landlords exceeded the number evicted by social landlords for the first time in 2014
  • the increase in repossessions in recent years has been almost entirely due to the increasing use of ‘no fault’ evictions, using Section 21 (S21) of the Housing Act 1988
  • the use of S21 is highly concentrated geographically – four out of every five repossessions using S21 are in London, the East and the South East, and nearly two-thirds are in London alone.

JRF is calling for the Government to end the freeze on support for housing costs, and uprate Housing Benefit in line with local rents.

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