Propertymark supports call for more housing options in Wales

Propertymark has joined Homes For All Cymru in calling for the Chancellor of the Exchequer to help those on low wages and those in receipt of benefits gain more access to housing options.

Propertymark is a member of Homes For All Cymru, which brings together housing organisations in Wales to maximise the contribution of housing to the health and wellbeing of communities. 

Homes For All Cymru wrote to Chancellor Jeremy Hunt regarding the static level of Local Housing Allowance rates; Propertymark supported this letter and also signed it. 

The letter highlighted that according to Zoopla data, there were only 2% of available homes at Local Housing Allowance level.

A report from the Bevan Foundation found that only six of 22 local authorities had property available to rent at Local Housing Allowance level, as of February 2023.

Out of these six authorities, the number of homes available remained critically low. 

Furthermore, Propertymark submitted its Budget Representation to HM Treasury, which asked that Local Housing Allowance rates be pegged at the 50th percentile, if not the 30th and topped up annually to reflect market rates.

It argued that this would ensure those on low wages and in receipt of benefits had access to wider affordable housing options.

However, Local Housing Allowance rates can be inaccurate because landlords do not submit their rental data to the Valuation Office Agency.

Propertymark previously met with the Valuation Office Agency to encourage agents to submit their rental data so that Local Housing Allowance levels are more accurate.

Propertymark has campaigned on this issue and called for this in their Spring Budget Representation.

It was previously part of an England and Wales-wide coalition campaigning for increases in Local Housing Allowance levels.

Tim Thomas, policy and campaigns officer at Propertymark, said: “Propertymark supports Homes For All Cymru’s call to assist those on benefits or low wages to gain greater access to a wide range of housing options.

“We call on the Chancellor to take our message seriously to help those struggling in general because of the cost-of-living crisis.”