Hackney has around 15,500 people on the council housing waiting list and 2,000 people registered as homeless. There are more than 17,000 people living in ‘unsuitable’ housing. Unsuitable housing includes overcrowded homes; in Hackney almost 10 per cent of households are overcrowded, compared to 2.5 per cent nationally. And property prices are beyond a joke. Now, only the very rich can afford to buy a house in Hackney.
We believe the Council has neglected our housing stock over many years and been too slow to apply government ‘Decent Homes’ money to bring up the standard. Woodberry Down, Kings Crescent and many other estates have hardly started rebuilding while other authorities have already achieved decent standards.
Since 2003, under Labour, Hackney has seen barely a third of the homes built as ‘affordable housing’, only 4,054 out of the total of 12,272. And only 2,080 of these are socially rented. It’s no wonder when you talk to people on the doorstep, in the markets and on our streets, you always hear stories of how people are being forced out of the borough. We are losing one of the greatest strengths and joys of Hackney – our diverse and energetic communities.
How we’ll make it right
With a mix of funding from bond finance, council-owned companies and local asset vehicles or pension fund investors, many of whom are actively seeking this kind of stable long-term prospect; and the relaxation of controls on borrowing, far more homes can be built.
We believe we can build 12,000 new social homes for rent over 10 years. Beautiful, affordable, sustainable homes that communities are proud to live in.