From empty bedsits to homes for renters – living rent plans approved

Outdated bedsits in a Clapton tower block will be replaced with genuinely affordable modern homes for the borough’s private renters after the Council’s latest Hackney Living Rent homes were given the green light.

The 16 homes at Gooch House in Clapton, which don’t meet today’s standards and currently sit empty, will be refurbished and repurposed for local residents who are priced out of home ownership but don’t have priority for social housing. Rents will be set at just a third of local incomes, bringing private rents more closely in line with Council rents and saving renters thousands each year following rocketing rents in Hackney over the last decade.

As part of the Council’s #BetterRenting campaignthe Hackney Living Rent homes will set the standard for private renting that gives a fair deal to renters, including deposits capped at three weeks’ rent, longer tenancies and exemption from Section 21 ‘no-fault evictions. The campaign has already seen new licensing measures introduced to tackle rogue landlords in the borough and successful calls for a ban on letting fees charged to tenants.

Cllr Sem Moema, Mayoral Adviser for Private Renting and Housing Affordability
Far too many renters in Hackney are paying extortionate rents without the security or standards to show for it. Hackney Living Rent demonstrates what a good landlord looks like, while giving real opportunities for local renters on low to middle incomes to stay in Hackney without compromising their living standards or being unable to save for a deposit.

By repurposing outdated bedsits that no longer meet modern standards, we’re making the most of our own assets to provide high-quality, well-designed new homes and creating a better option for renters to pay a fair amount for a good home for the long term.
Cllr Sem Moema, Mayoral Adviser for Private Renting and Housing Affordability

Gooch House is the second phase of Hackney Living Rent homes to get the go ahead, with eight new homes aimed at private renters coming to Bridge House in Homerton later this year. With rents calculated based on a third of average local incomes, eligible renters can save nearly £10,000 a year on the average two-bedroom flat compared with market rents.

This is one of more than 20 sites where Hackney is building around 2,000 genuinely affordable new homes between 2018-2022. More than half of these will be for social rent, shared ownership or Hackney Living Rent, with the remainder sold outright to help pay for them.

Find out more: Five ways our homes for living rent will make renting fairer