This article is part of a series based around our Plan for Affordable Housing which you can read more about here.

To sign the petition supporting our Plan for Affordable Housing click here.

In recent years a toxic mix of rising rents, stagnant wages, reductions in welfare benefits and cuts to social support services, has led to an increasingly severe housing crisis for the people of this country. Locally this has meant a rise in demand for affordable housing as seen by increases in the level of homelessness and the number of households looking to the council or charities for housing related advice and guidance.

There has been a noticeable rise in the numbers of people sleeping rough on the streets of Portsmouth. This has been reflected in the official figures which show the number of rough sleepers at 7 in 2013 then rising every year until this year’s figure of 60.

Table 1: the number of rough sleepers in Portsmouth

Year 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Count 7 8 15 37 60

The figures for 2013-2016 are sourced from DCLG statistics and the 2017 figure from PCC Cabinet papers

In each of the last 5 years between 601 and 702 households approached Portsmouth City Council’s Housing Options team to make a homeless application. Over that period a total of 3,287 households found themselves in this position.

Table 2: the number of households presenting as homeless

Year 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 2015/16 2016/17 Total
Count 688 601 606 690 702 3,287

Source: Table 784(local authorities’ action under the homelessness provisions of the Housing Acts) DCLG

Taking into account the levels of rough sleeping, the number of households making homeless applications, as well as other measures such as overcrowding and new household formation, the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire (PUSH)[1] has identified an objectively assessed need for between 593 and 768 new units of affordable housing in Portsmouth every year.

To sign the petition supporting our Plan for Affordable Housing click here.