Homelessness and Overcrowding

The homelessness rate in Wakefield has tended to be below the England average, but it can fluctuate over time (see graph below).

Source: MHCLG (Open Data Communities API)

Local housing authorities in England have a duty to secure accommodation for unintentionally homeless households in priority need. Households might be placed in temporary accommodation pending the completion of inquiries into an application, or they might spend time waiting in temporary accommodation after an application is accepted until suitable secure accommodation becomes available. A range of accommodation types may be used, including private rented housing; social housing on a short-term tenancies; hostel/refuge accommodation; or bed and breakfast accommodation. The proportion of Wakefield households living in temporary accommodation increased markedly during 2017, and reached a position similar to the England average. Private sector leased housing is the most commonly used temporary accommodation type used in Wakefield District (around 75% of all households in temporary accommodation), but in Q1 2018 there was a marked increase in the use of bed and breakfast accomodation.

Source: MHCLG (Open Data Communities API)

Overcrowding

At the 2011 Census, around 2.7% of households were overcrowded – not having enough bedrooms for the type of family living in the household. This proportion was lower than the England average. Overcrowding was more common in rented households than owned households – 4.9% of private rented households were overcrowded and 4.2% of social rented households. Of the overcrowded private rented households, around 70% of the households had dependent children. Overcrowding also varied by ethnicity, with 14.9% of Asian households being overcrowded and 12.7% of White Other households.

Concealed Families and adult Children Living with their Parents

Some overcrowding may be due to extended families living together – a preferred choice of living arrangement for some people. The 2011 Census recorded 475 young families with children (family head aged under 35) living within another household – most likely with parents. A further 270 couples without children were living in a similar situation. The proportion of families and couples in this situation is lower than the proportion across England as a whole. In addition to couples living with parents, around 14,400 of single people aged 18-24 (53% of age group) are living with their parent(s), and around 5,600 of single people aged 25-34 (14% of age group).

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