The housing crisis has emerged as the biggest crisis in the country. After the opening of the visa and immigration doors, not only London but the whole of Britain has created an intolerable housing crisis. House rents in London have more than doubled in just three years. And according to the demand, the owners are also renting uninhabitable houses, taking advantage of the housing crisis. Millions of people have to live in unhealthy environment due to lack of alternative.
Around 160,000 people across England live in hidden locations, often in overcrowded and sometimes dangerous one-room accommodation, according to the analysis.
According to information compiled by local authorities, there are approximately 32,000 unlicensed mixed-use (HMO) large-scale housing units. At least 159,340 renters are believed to live there, many attracted by cheap rents due to the cost of living crisis.
The situation can be dire. For example, more than 10 people share his one bathroom, conditions are poor, and there is little protection in the event of a fire.
Landlords have doubled their borrowing to invest in HMOs since 2018.
Landlords renting to single families can expect to earn 5% of the property’s value in annual rent, while licensed HMOs typically earn around 7.5% and sometimes 10%.
Profits from unlicensed rental properties can be even higher, as landlords can take on more tenants and do not have to comply with licencing standards.
This analysis of the rise of ‘Bedsit Britain’ is part of the Guardian’s Living Hell series, which focuses on the rental private sector.
Estimates of large hidden accommodation (housed by five or more independent people sharing bathrooms and kitchens) based on local government statistics submitted to government between 2011 and 2022.
Numbers have increased over the past decade, with a 46% increase in England.
In unlicensed housing communities, occupancy, fire protection, and other living conditions are not monitored. Larger HMOs require a license in the UK, but smaller he HMOs only require a license in some areas of the country.
According to the latest estimates, there are more than 367,000 small homes in England and a population of at least 1 million people. In Southend, Essex, where more than 670 homes are run under the watchful eye of the council’s housing watchdog, two landlords were arrested this year for running unlicensed HMOs, according to analysis by the Guardian.
He prosecuted the case and exposed the profits he made from lodging facilities for the poor. This is accomplished with well-maintained buildings.
Landlords have left 11 rooms in a dilapidated, rat-infested former hotel with unusable kitchens, unusable toilets, broken gas supplies, clogged drains and partially blocked fire escapes. The company charged 18 tenants a total of more than £5,800 per month.
Southend City Council said the number of HMOs appeared to be increasing in seaside towns. Officers obtained building permits and ensured compliance with housing standards.
Haringey, north London, which has issued 43 fines to landlords operating unlicensed HMOs since May 2021, has three or four police officers, in some cases entire families occupying one room. He said he had uncovered shared accommodation.
“It’s not just single adults. We see couples with babies living in single rooms in HMOs. It is not uncommon,” said Sarah Williams, Haringey’s cabinet member for housing. “It makes me very angry. The level of this problem needs central government intervention. We have to regulate and control the rental market.”
The county, where about 22,000 people live in 5,000 HMOs, has seen an increase in HMO conversions. Last year, the number of planning applications to convert detached houses into HMOs increased by almost 20% compared to the average of the previous five years.
The broader he HMO market has grown in recent years. Loans to buy HMOs more than doubled between 2018 and 2022, from £310m to £683m, according to banking industry trade body UK Finance.
The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities said it was determined to crack down on rogue landlords. “We have put measures in place that make it easier for councils to effectively tackle unlicensed HMOs, introducing civil penalties of up to £30,000 and rent repayment orders for a wide range of offences,” it said.