A family is a non-starter for typical Londoners

Can you afford to start a family in London?

As we launch www.votehomes2016.com we have crunched the most recent rent and earnings data for London.

We’ve found that wherever you are in London, starting a family is unaffordable if you’re on a typical wage and renting a typical 2-bed home. With just one earner – a common situation if paying for childcare isn’t an option – the rent on a family home is just too high. Couples throughout London want to settle down but can’t.

Even couples in the most affordable borough, Havering, will pay 35% of their salary on rent. In Camden, where the rent is 70% of the median salary, forget it.

The future of London is bleak if more than half of its young people can’t afford to do what their parents did and settle down to start a family.

This May, we have the chance to elect a Mayor who will do something about that. Private rents should be much lower than they are so City Hall should be building more genuinely affordable homes. But instead of renting them out at 80% of the market rent and calling that “affordable”, they need to ensure that rents are at levels people can afford – that should be no more than 30% of the income of the poorest 25% of Londoners. Please write to the candidates and ask them to restore affordability to its original meaning.

Reported in the London Evening Standard