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Temporary accommodation placements by borough

Key points

  • At the start of 2015 London boroughs placed 15,600 families outside their boroughs, of 64,000 total placements. This suggests that around one in twelve out-of-borough placements, and one in fifty of all placements, are made out of London.
  • In total, 3,300 households were housed by Newham council in temporary accommodation at the start of 2015, the highest of all London boroughs. 1,300 of them were living outside Newham.
  • Brent had the next highest number of households in temporary accommodation at 3,200 but most of them were housed within Brent itself with 500 living outside of the borough.
  • Kensington & Chelsea has the highest proportion of households in temporary accommodation placed outside of its area, with 1,200 of its 1,800 households placed outside of the borough (two thirds).

Temporary accommodation placements by borough

What does this graph show?

The graph shows the number of households living in temporary accommodation by each London borough and the number placed outside of that council's area.

At the start of 2015 15,600 households were placed in temporary accommodation by a London borough outside of that borough (a third of all placements).

In total, 3,300 households were housed by Newham council in temporary accommodation at the start of 2015, the highest of all London boroughs. 1,300 of them were living outside Newham. Brent had the next highest number of households in temporary accommodation at 3,200 but most of them were housed within Brent itself with 500 living outside of the borough. Kensington & Chelsea has the highest proportion of households in temporary accommodation placed outside of its area, with 1,200 of its 1,800 households placed outside of the borough (two thirds).

Again there is no clear geographical pattern to the number of households in temporary accommodation and the proportion of which are placed outside their borough. In theory the most expensive inner London boroughs have the biggest financial restrictions in their temporary accommodation options and may be more likely to look outside the borough boundary. But Merton, Waltham Forest and Lambeth, far from the most expensive boroughs, are the only other boroughs with more than half of their temporary accommodation households placed outside of the borough. This lack of geographical pattern highlights the huge variation in how councils respond to their duty to support their residents most in need.

But moving out of the borough is not the same as moving out of London. Freedom of Information requests to London boroughs by The Independent found that 2,700 London families had been moved out of London altogether in the previous two years. The graph shows that in one year, London boroughs placed 15,600 families outside their boroughs, of 64,000 total placements. This suggests that around one in twelve out-of-borough placements, and one in fifty of all placements, are made out of London. This suggests that there is huge movement within London, with boroughs both placing families outside their boundaries and housing families from other boroughs.

Data used

P1E Homelessness returns, DCLG; the data is for the end of March 2015.

Indicator last updated: 21 October 2015