London’s Poverty Profile

New housing completions

What does this chart show?

‘Affordable’ homes are available at sub-market costs to households whose needs are not met by the market.*  There were 21,500 affordable home completions in London in the three years to 2015/16. This represents 24% of all housing completions during that period. A similar number of affordable homes completed were in Inner (10,800) and Outer London (10,700).

This graph shows that in the three years to 2015/16, Tower Hamlets delivered the most affordable homes of any borough at 1,830 (29% of completed homes). Waltham Forest was the borough in which affordable homes were the largest proportion of new homes at 47%. However, this is because this borough completed relatively few market homes, rather than a high number of affordable homes. 

Bexley delivered the fewest affordable homes. The borough actually had a net loss of social rents as more were demolished or converted to a different tenure than were built due to a phased redevelopment scheme. As this scheme progresses, the borough has set a target for 50% of all new completions to be affordable.

In 2015/16, a net total of 6,700 affordable homes were completed, which represents only 39% of the 2015 London Plan target of 17,000 net affordable homes each year. The number of net affordable completions has declined since 2013/14, when the average for the previous three years was 7,700 a year.

Affordable home completions have also fallen as a proportion of total home completions over this period. Around a quarter (24%) of the net increase in homes were affordable. In the three years to 2013/14, a third (34%) of all home completions were affordable. 38% of the affordable homes delivered in the three years to 2015/16 became social rents, 39% for affordable rent and 23% for shared ownership.

‘Affordable housing’ is defined in this graph based on the 2011 London Plan definition which defines affordable rent as 80% or below of market value. Mayor Sadiq Khan has indicated he plans to publish a revised London Plan, which recent policy documents indicate will probably change both the definition of ‘affordable rent’ and the targets for affordable housing.

* In practice this is housing managed  by a local authority or a registered social landlord available as shared ownership, affordable rent or social rent.


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