Evicting tenants from social housing cost at least £28 million

Posted 07 Sep 2021

Today we’re publishing research showing that it cost the public purse at
least £28 million pounds to evict tenants from social homes in a single year.

We commissioned academics from the University of Liverpool to establish the true cost of
evictions by councils and housing associations. The study goes beyond the direct
costs like legal fees, to get a more accurate cost of the 1,866 evictions by councils
and housing associations in 2019-2020.

£28million is a conservative estimate but a significant proportion of this comes from the cost
of providing homelessness services for those households who went on to present
as homeless. The cost of  providing support for homeless households varies widely but the research has highlighted that the average total cost of evicting a single person with low support needs into homelessness, with a not unusual 9 month stay in temporary accommodation, is nearly £24,000.

Our Director Alison Watson, said:

“This important research shows that the use of eviction to manage rent arrears is not
cost-effective.

“Instead it is a classic lose-lose situation with individuals and families facing harmful disruption and stress all at excessive cost to the public purse.

“We must see an end to people being evicted into homelessness and we call on social landlords to follow best practice and find more progressive and effective answers to helping
tenants manage rent arrears.”