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London housing shortage a ‘ticking time bomb’ for businesses

The growing housing crisis in London is forcing employees to quit their jobs and making it harder for firms to recruit staff, according to a new survey by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and CBRE.

More than a quarter - 28% - of the 176 leading companies in the capital who responded said employees are actually leaving their jobs because they cannot afford to live in the local area.

Some 66% of firms said that housing costs and availability are having a negative impact on the recruitment of entry-level staff. This is up from 57% in September 2015.

The study also found that a lack of housing is also hampering businesses’ ability to offer flexible working, with over a third - 36% - of businesses surveyed finding it hard to do so.

“This survey speaks loud and clear – London’s housing shortage is a ticking time bomb,” said Eddie Curzon, CBI London director.

He supports the Mayor of London’s aim to build 66,000 new homes a year, but says that he wants to see more clarity on how he will work with local authorities to crucially unlock supply in every borough.

Reflecting on the research, Adam J. Hetherington, CBRE managing director, London, said: “Continued growth is vital for London, which remains one of the most sought-after cities for investment. The Government must take heed of the key issues such as housing, business rates and infrastructure which are impeding businesses ability for future growth.”

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