The appalling rise in the number of people sleeping rough in England illustrates the importance of private rented accommodation, according to The Deposit Protection Services (The DPS).
More than 4,000 people a night have been sleeping rough on England’s streets, up 16% year-on-year, according to the latest figures from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).
The data shows that more than half of councils in England recorded an increase in rough sleeping compared with the year before, which is a shocking rate.
The government said it was determined to help the most vulnerable and was investing £550m to tackle the problem, but that is unlikely to stop thousands of desperate people from being forced to sleep rough.
Reacting to figures published by the DCLG, Julian Foster, managing director at The DPS, said: “Everyone should have the right to a safe, warm, secure home, and the rise in rough sleeping is sad news for communities across the country.
“A healthy rental sector plays a vital role in combatting homelessness by providing housing options that suit individual circumstances, particularly when house prices are so high.
“Whether it’s because they are saving for their own property or wanting greater choice over the length of their occupancy, tenants need the diversity of housing choices that renting provides, and it’s vital we continue to work with government to ensure renters have affordable, flexible and financially secure options when they select a home.”