Housing Co-operative

Housing in Tower Hamlets

There is a London-wide housing crisis. Tower Hamlets is at its sharper edge. Rising rents and mortgage deposits, constrained social housing provision and poor wage growth is placing immense strain on people's dignity and aspirations.

1. House prices and earnings are rapidly diverging in the borough

House price statistics for small areas in England and Wales Statistical bulletins – Office for National Statistics”, Ons.gov.uk, 2022. [Online]

Figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), looking at the period 2007-2020, show that average house prices in Tower Hamlets increased 46% while median income only grew by 19%.

The median salary of a tax-paying individual in Tower Hamlets is £31,100. 

Borough-level statistics from 2019 show that the median household income in Tower Hamlets stands at £30,760.

The average price of a home in Tower Hamlets is £455,331 and the average deposit is £67,866. Buying an average-priced home, with a 5% deposit, would require a household income of £100,000.

UK House Price Index – Office for National Statistics”, Ons.gov.uk [Online]
Borough Statistics: Income, Poverty, and Welfare”, Towerhamlets.gov.uk, 2022. [Online]
Average Income of Tax Payers, Borough – London Datastore”, Data.london.gov.uk [Online]

2. Social housing provision is inadequate

Households on Local Authority Waiting List, Borough – London Datastore”, Data.london.gov.uk, 2022. [Online]

There are upwards of 20,000 people or families on the waiting list for social housing in the borough. 

In the 1980s, 80 percent of all homes in Tower Hamlets were owned by the Council/GLC. Today, just 10.9 percent of the stock is owned by the Council.

For the first time since Tower Hamlet’s was created, in 1965, less than half of the housing stock is public or social housing.

Borough Statistics: Income, Poverty, and Welfare”, Towerhamlets.gov.uk [Online]

3. The private rental sector is extremely expensive and low quality