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Rising house prices put South Yorkshire families ‘under huge financial strain’



MP John Healey

MP John Healey

by Chris Burn

Rising house prices in South Yorkshire are putting families under ‘huge financial strain’ as parents dig deep to get their children on the property ladder, an MP has warned.

Former housing minister John Healey has said he is concerned by new research from charity Shelter which has found the ‘Bank of Mum of Dad’ is now paying out an average £23,000 towards securing a house for their children.

It follows a new report by the TUC which listed Rotherham as one of 26 areas around the country where house prices have moved from ‘easily affordable’ to ‘out of reach’ between 1997 and 2013.

Mr Healey, who represents Wentworth and Dearne, said: “The cost of renting and buying a home is causing huge financial strain in our area.

“The TUC figures bear witness to what many people are telling me, that while their wages don’t go as far, the cost of buying a home just keeps going up.

“House-building under this government is at the lowest level since the 1920s, pushing up prices and making it harder for people to buy.

“At the same time, the government is refusing to tackle rising rents in the private sector.”

The Shelter poll found 20 per cent of parents helping their children to buy a property had done so using savings set aside for retirement or elderly care.

The research also found 60 per cent of parents were unable to save any money towards buying their children a home.

Chief executive of Shelter Campbell Robb said the market was getting out of control.

He said: “When parents are having to hand over such vast sums of money to help their children afford a stable home, it is yet another sign that the housing market is spinning out of control.

“A whole generation of young people are working hard and saving hard, but our desperate shortage of affordable homes still leaves them priced out.

“A pay-out from the Bank of Mum and Dad can’t be the next generation’s only chance of affording a home of their own.

“Politicians need to give back hope to all those left priced out by building the affordable homes they are crying out for.”

“From a new generation of part rent part buy homes, to encouraging smaller builders back into the market, it is possible to turn the tide on the housing shortage, but only with the right innovation, investment and political will.

“It’s time for politicians from all parties to turn their talk into action.”

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