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Housing: Waiting Lists

Volume 467: debated on Tuesday 13 November 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many people were on the housing waiting list for (a) each local authority and (b) social landlords in each local authority area in (i) 1997, (ii) 2002 and (iii) 2007. (163332)

The number of households on the waiting list for social housing in each local authority each year since 1997, as at 1 April each year, is published on the Communities and Local Government website at:

Information as to whether a specific local authority area operates a common housing register is also provided. Figures for 2007 are not currently available. The link for this table is as follows:

Communities and Local Government does not collect information on people or households on individual registered social landlords (RSL) waiting lists. However, where the local authority maintains a common housing register with RSLs in their district, the list will also include households placed on the list by RSLs.

Local authorities in England report the numbers of households on their housing waiting list as at 1 April in their annual Housing Strategy Statistical Appendix returns. Not everyone on the waiting list is necessarily in urgent housing need. The size of the waiting list is not necessarily an indicator of absolute need, it is only useful as a broad indicator of housing demand in an area. The waiting list includes those who consider social housing as their preferred or one of a number of housing options, and those who decide to get onto the waiting list before they need or want to move house.