More than nine out of ten family homes for private rent are too expensive for people on housing benefit, new analysis has revealed.
Research by the National Housing Federation (NHF) found 94% of homes are unaffordable to local housing allowance claimants, with some towns only having one affordable property available.
The NHF found there are some parts of the country where less than 1% of private rented properties are covered by the Local Housing Allowance rate.
It warned this is increasing levels of poverty and debt, and contributing to the number of children living in overcrowded and poor quality accommodation.
Kate Henderson, chief executive of the National Housing Federation said: ‘The crippling effects of the housing crisis and significant cuts to benefits have forced thousands of parents into impossible situations in order to keep a roof over their children’s heads, many having to choose between crippling debt, overcrowding or homelessness.
’The time to act is now - Government must increase LHA payments in line with at least the bottom 30% of rents; as well as investing in building more social housing so we can ensure there are secure and affordable homes for these families in the future.’
The NHF is also calling on the Government to end the benefit freeze and commit to investing £12.8bn annually in building new social housing.