New figures from the 2021 Census has revealed that more people in Bury are renting privately than a decade ago.

Data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show 14,249 households were renting privately in the borough when the Census was carried out in March 2021, equating to 17.7 per cent of the 80,696 households in the area.

At the time of the previous Census in March 2011, 13.8 per cent of households were private renters meaning that the share has increased over the past decade.

These figures come as many housing campaign groups call on the government to deliver on its promise of a better deal for private tenants.

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Across England and Wales there are now 5m private renters (20.3 per cent of households), up from 3.9m (16.7 per cent) in 2011.

Separate figures from the ONS and the Valuation Office Agency show that median private rent in the Northwest was £585 a month as of March 2021, up 18.2 per cent from £495 in June 2011.

Shelter, a charity that tackles homelessness, said the "only lasting solution" to the housing crisis is to build more social homes.

It pointed to a waiting list of more than a million households for social housing across England, saying that the social housing is lost every year to sales and demolitions.

Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter said: “It’s time for the government to invest in a new generation of good quality social homes with genuinely affordable rents pegged to local incomes.”

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Across England and Wales there has been little change in the amount of social housing whilst the number of households in social housing increased from 4.1m to 4.2m.

The Census statistics also suggest it may be getting harder to join the housing ladder.

The number of households owning their home through a mortgage, loan or shared ownership has dropped across England and Wales, from 7.8m (33.5 per cent of households) in 2011 to 7.4m (29.7 per cent) last year.

The same was true of Bury, where the share of households with mortgages or shared ownership fell from 38.2 per cent in 2011 to 32.9 per cent last year.

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A spokesperson for the Department of Levelling up, Housing and Communities said: “Ensuring a fair deal for renters remains apriority for the government, that’s why we will deliver on our commitment to abolish Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions and introduce a Renters Reform Bill in this Parliament."

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