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what is affordable housing?

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According to (2022), there is no absolute consensus on the definition of ‘affordable housing’.


The Government defines it as ‘social rented, affordable rented and intermediate housing provided to specified eligible households whose needs are not met by the market’.


Other definitions of ‘affordable housing’ focus more specifically on the relationship between household income and spending on housing. The housing charity Shelter says affordable housing should cost no more than 35% of your household income after tax and benefits.

Below is a useful explanation from Cambridge University on what is affordable housing and why the UK is in need of it:

The Community Land Trust Network provides additional information on how communities can help address the housing shortage by building affordable homes.

From the Second World War up to 1980, we were building an average of around 126,000 social homes every year. Last year, there were only 6,463 new social homes. (2022)

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