London is off-limits to the average couple who want to start a family, according to research from Generation Rent.
The group has launched a campaign called Vote Homes 2016 which calls for a better deal for renters from the next mayor.
Its analysis of government rent and earnings statistics claims that there is not a single London Borough where the median rent on a two-bed home is affordable to a family earning the median salary.
Across London the median rent would take up 52% of the median salary – much more than the 30% considered affordable. In the cheapest London borough, Havering, rent on a typical two-bed takes up 35% of the median salary.
The difficulty of paying the rent on a family home with just one earner means having a child is unaffordable for a typical London couple.
Vote Homes 2016 aims to give objective advice on the main mayoral candidates' policies that affect private renters. Each candidate’s policies on housing are marked on a traffic light system depending on whether they fail to improve the status quo (red), are on the right track (amber) or will significantly improve life for renters (green). The site will be updated as and when candidates announce new policies.
Among its proposals, the campaign is calling on the candidates to commit to building homes at genuinely affordable rents where the poorest 25% of Londoners will pay no more than 30% of their income on rent.
Betsy Dillner, director of Generation Rent, said: "Housing is now so expensive even couples on ordinary incomes are unable to start a family. People who grew up here are facing an impossible choice about their future. London’s status as a world capital will rapidly disintegrate if half of its population see the shutters come down on their aspirations.
"We need a mayor who will make lower rents their first priority and take immediate action to help the capital’s 2 million private renters.”