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New project launched to find the real impact of housing costs on the local economy

Monday, 11 June 2018

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A crucial new report has been commissioned to find out more about the wider impact of escalating housing costs on the local economies of towns and cities across Hampshire, Surrey and the Isle of Wight.

In partnership with Enterprise M3 and Radian, the Southern Policy Centre will be undertaking a thorough research programme into the subject.

Mick Sweeney, chief executive at Radian said:
““We’re delighted to be involved in this research. It’s often those on lower incomes who suffer disproportionately from the higher living costs and availability of affordable housing in particular and this needs to be addressed. At Radian our focus is to provide more secure and affordable housing across all tenures and the findings of this research will help shape our offering.”

The research will focus on the cost to businesses of expensive and insecure housing, examining the cost of buying or renting versus the average income, and the possible impact on recruitment, retention and business success of housing costs across the Central South. The Southern Policy Centre are seeking the views of local businesses, Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and local government to help create as comprehensive a picture as possible of the situation.

Such information for the Central South is long overdue, as the region has had little public policy focus. Average incomes remain above the national average, but it comes as no surprise to most that live here that this is often a mask for higher levels of inequality. Whatever their income, housing costs will make up a higher proportion of their disposable income for our local workers.

By giving a wider view of the true cost of expensive housing, the study will be used to help shape local and national housing policy and to find ways in which we can tackle the problem of high housing costs.