Rented housing sector


There are 1.8 million households on waiting lists for social housing. We must ensure people can get accommodation that meets their needs both in terms of quality and cost.


The government is improving the quality and quantity of properties for rent, both in the private and social sector. We are:


On 21 November 2011, the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, and Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government published Laying the foundations: a housing strategy for England, which set out the government’s actions to address the housing shortage, boost the economy, create jobs, and give people the opportunity to get on the housing ladder.

Who we’ve consulted

We published a consultation on reforming social housing Local decisions: a fairer future for social housing on 22 November 2010.

New guidance for allocating social housing, Allocation of accommodation: guidance for local housing authorities in England was published on 5 January 2012 to accompany changes in the Localism Act.


On 9 June 2011 we published an affordable rent impact assessment and a full equality impact assessment. This shows the costs and benefits of providing affordable housing under the new model as part of the Affordable Homes Programme.

Who we’re working with

The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) is the national housing and regeneration agency for England (other than in London). It was established as an non-departmental government body on 1 December 2008. HCA’s role includes:

  • working with partners to create homes, economic growth and jobs
  • providing investment, including the Affordable Homes Programme
  • economic regulation of housing associations, safeguarding £43 billion of taxpayer investment in the sector and helping to secure more private investment for affordable housing