The cost of living crisis is only making homelessness worse. UK prices reached a record 40-year high in April 2022 and are showing no signs of relenting.
With prices still on the rise, more people are at risk of losing their homes. For those already facing homlessness, it’s even more difficult to break free from its cycle.
Our work at Simon On The Streets is more important than ever. We know how closely homelessness is linked to the cost of living, so the coming months are going to be a challenging time for us. With your support and the dedication of our outreach team, we hope to be able to support those who are hit the hardest.
It’s estimated that approximately 66,000 more people will be homeless by 2024. With rental prices on the rise, more people are struggling to afford to pay their rent.
Losing your home can happen quickly and to any of us, often due to circumstances outside of our control. Maintaining a tenancy can be surprisingly difficult, especially when something goes wrong with the systems involved in paying rent.
For people on minimum wage without family support, affording a place to live is a serious worry. Proving eligibility for benefits can also be difficult, with many vulnerable people slipping through cracks in the system.
Being able to afford a home is about more than just bricks and mortar. The price of energy bills has also skyrocketed, leaving hundreds of people struggling to afford basics such as heating and keeping their lights on.
Around 26% of UK adult renters can’t afford to keep their homes warm in winter. In order to afford to pay the bills, individuals are left with no choice other than to borrow money. Where high interest rates are involved, this can lead to serious financial difficulty.
Vulnerable people are hit hardest
The cost of living crisis will have the worst effect on those who are already struggling economically. Many people will be pushed over the edge because of additional financial strains they simply can’t deal with.
Once somebody becomes homeless, it becomes increasingly difficult to break free from its entrapment. Not only is it nearly impossible to get a bank account or a job, it can also be more challenging to claim benefits and access funding when you don’t have a fixed address.
Unfortunately, there are still many misconceptions around homelessness that simply aren’t true. It’s only when we start to show more compassion and understanding towards the most vulnerable people in society that we can truly tackle homelessness.
The coming months and years are going to be a huge challenge for the people we support. We appreciate that everyone is feeling the sting of the cost of living crisis, but showing your support doesn’t have to just be about money. Donating time and resources and raising awareness goes a long way towards breaking the cycle of homelessness.
At Simon On The Streets, our support is ongoing and long-lasting. We’re about much more than short-term problem solving - we focus on working towards a better and more stable future with all the people we support, but we need your help to do this.
Take a look at our website to learn more.