Crisis warns a ‘woeful’ lack of housebuilding could increase homelessness, and criticises the benefit cap.
Crisis has described the Chancellor’s 2014 Budget housebuilding plans as ‘woefully inadequate’. The Help To Buy scheme is predicted to create 120,000 homes by the end of the decade, while the expansion of Ebbsfleet will add a further 15,000 – far short of the 250,000 homes needed each year to keep pace with demand.
The Chancellor’s new £119bn overall cap on benefits could leave people – particularly those with disabilities and low earners – at increased risk of homelessness, Crisis has warned. The cap is calculated five years in advance, and if miscalculated could lead to further cuts to benefits,
Leslie Morphy, Chief Executive of Crisis, said: “Though the maths might look solid today, we fear that predicting something as complex as national demand for benefits five years in advance is incredibly risky. If the sums do turn out to be wrong, in four of five years’ time it will cause poverty, misery and homelessness.
“Combine this with another woefully inadequate housebuilding pledge – a drop in the ocean compared to demand – and you have a recipe for increased demand, higher prices, a higher benefit bill and yet more homelessness.”