Income spent on rent for new lettings of social housing

The main facts and figures show that:

  • in 2017/18, there were 297,565 new social housing lettings where the ethnicity of the main tenant was known
  • the percentage of income (including benefits) spent on rent for new social housing lettings is similar across all ethnic groups, ranging from 33% to 40% – by comparison, the percentages in 2016/17 ranged from 34% to 41%
  • Black Caribbean households spent the largest percentage of their income on rent compared to all other ethnic groups, while Pakistani and Other White households spent the lowest percentage – this was also the case in 2015/16 and 2016/17
Things you need to know

Social housing is provided by local authorities and private registered providers (mainly housing associations).

This data relates to new, permanent lettings of social housing. It excludes lettings where a tenant starts a new tenancy agreement but stays in the same property (after their previous tenancy agreement ended).

The data only includes lettings where the tenant reported their ethnicity. This means that figures for new lettings published here may be different from other published figures on social housing.

There were 312,989 new social housing lettings in 2017/18. The ethnicity of the main tenant was known for 297,565 of these new lettings (95%), and refused or missing for 15,655 lettings (5%).

There may be some inaccuracy in the administrative data used to compile these statistics due to missing responses or reporting errors when the data was entered.

When interpreting the income data, one should bear in mind that a significant proportion (43%) of new social households refused to disclose their income.

Household income used in these figures does not take account of the size or membership of households, which means that we can’t make statements about whether some ethnic groups are poorer compared to others.

For example, 2 households may have the same number of people, but in one household there are several dependent children, while in the other, everyone is employed. In this data, the amount of rent as a percentage of household income has not been adjusted to reflect these differences.

The raw data has been taken from the Continuous Recording of Lettings and Sales in Social Housing (CORE) system. The statistics presented on this page have not been published separately by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG).

What the data measures

This data measures the amount of rent paid for social housing lettings as a percentage of income, including benefits. The data is broken down by ethnicity.

The information relates to households. A household is one person or a group of people (not necessarily related) who have the accommodation as their only or main residence. If it is a group, they must share cooking facilities and also share a living room, sitting room or dining area.

The data uses the ethnicity of the main tenant. For a single tenancy, this is the named tenant.

For a joint tenancy, the main tenant is:

  • the economically active or working person
  • the oldest person, if both tenants are working or both are not working

These figures are drawn from the Continuous Recording of Lettings and Sales in Social Housing (CORE) system in 2016/17. CORE is a complete census of new social housing lettings, which records:

  • social housing lettings
  • affordable housing lettings
  • sales by private registered providers
The ethnic categories used in this data

This data uses the standardised ethnic groups based on the 2011 Census.

White:

  • English/Welsh/Scottish/Northern Irish/British
  • Irish
  • Gypsy, Traveller or Irish Traveller
  • Any other White background

Mixed/Multiple ethnic groups:

  • White and Black Caribbean
  • White and Black African
  • White and Asian
  • Any other Mixed/Multiple ethnic background

Asian/Asian British:

  • Indian
  • Pakistani
  • Bangladeshi
  • Chinese
  • Any other Asian background

Black/African/Caribbean/Black British:

  • African
  • Caribbean
  • Any other Black/African/Caribbean background

Other ethnic group:

  • Arab
  • Any other ethnic group

Ethnic groups and how data on ethnicity is collected

Income spent on rent for new social lettings by ethnicity

Percentage of income spent on rent for new social lettings by ethnicity

Ethnicity 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18
% % %
All N/A* 36 35
Asian
Bangladeshi 38 36 35
Chinese 38 40 36
Indian 38 38 37
Pakistani 34 34 33
Asian other 39 38 37
Black
Black African 38 38 37
Black Caribbean 43 41 40
Black other 40 37 38
Mixed
Mixed White/Asian 40 39 37
Mixed White/Black African 39 38 37
Mixed White/Black Caribbean 40 39 39
Mixed other 38 38 37
White
White British 37 36 35
White Irish 40 40 39
White Gypsy/Traveller 39 37 36
White other 34 34 33
Other
Arab 38 38 36
Any other 38 37 38

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • in 2017/18, the percentage of income spent on rent for new social housing lettings was similar across all ethnic groups, with a national average of 35%
  • Black Caribbean households spent 40% of their income on rent for new social housing lettings, the highest of all ethnic groups – Black Caribbean households also spent the highest percentage of their income on rent in 2015/16 and 2016/17
  • households from the Pakistani and Other White ethnic groups spent the lowest percentage of their income on rent for new social housing lettings in 2017/18, at 33% each – households from these ethnic groups also spent the lowest percentage of their income on rent in 2015/16 and 2016/17

Income spent on rent for new social lettings by ethnicity and area

Percentage of income spent on rent for new social lettings by ethnicity and area

Ethnicity East Midlands East of England London North East North West South East South West West Midlands Yorkshire & Humber
% % % % % % % % %
Asian
Bangladeshi 29 34 40 24 27 34 29 31 30
Chinese 28 33 46 26 33 30 40 31 34
Indian 33 37 47 26 35 39 31 36 37
Pakistani 31 33 42 31 32 35 36 32 32
Asian other 33 34 43 34 35 37 35 39 35
Black
Black African 33 37 42 31 33 38 33 35 33
Black Caribbean 35 42 45 35 36 42 36 37 35
Black other 35 38 46 33 36 37 37 36 33
Mixed
Mixed White/Asian 36 38 49 39 35 38 32 37 35
Mixed White/Black African 35 38 45 36 35 38 35 34 33
Mixed White/Black Caribbean 36 38 47 29 36 39 39 38 34
Mixed other 34 36 44 32 35 38 34 37 33
White
White British 34 37 46 33 34 38 34 35 34
White Irish 35 38 49 40 36 40 38 37 35
White Gypsy/Traveller 31 41 45 29 32 40 34 31 27
White other 28 34 43 29 29 36 28 31 27
Other
Arab 31 36 42 31 35 37 35 37 33
Any other 35 35 43 41 35 35 34 39 34

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • in 2017/18, the percentage of income spent on rent for new social housing lettings was highest in London for all ethnic groups, ranging from 40% for Bangladeshi households to 49% for both White Irish, and Mixed White and Asian households
  • the percentage was lowest in the North East, ranging from 24% for Bangladeshi households to 41% for households from the Other ethnic group

Methodology

Methodology

The 3 main types of housing tenure in England are:

  • owner occupiers
  • private renters
  • social renters

This data refers to new lettings to social renters only. The data is based on the data collected from providers via the on-line Continuous Recording of Lettings and Sales in Social Housing in England (CORE) system. CORE was first set up in 1989 and initially only required private registered providers (PRPs) to submit social housing lettings and sales information to support the government’s regulatory function. CORE’s remit expanded in 2004 to include local authority information.

Some questions on the CORE questionnaire are not compulsory. In particular, data on household characteristics (age, sex, economic status, ethnicity and nationality) may not be available to the housing officer or may be refused by the tenant.

The totals for new lettings used in this data differs from other published totals for new lettings, as this data does not use estimated data for ethnicity and excludes those where ethnicity was refused.

Information on lettings of social housing in England is provided by local authorities and private registered providers (previously known as housing associations). Information about the tenancy, the tenants and the property is collected by data providers each time there is a new letting of a social housing property.

Weighting:

Weighting is used to adjust the results of a survey to make them representative of the population and improve their accuracy.

For example, a survey which contains 25% females and 75% males will not accurately reflect the views of the general population which we know is around 50% male and 50% female.

Data here has been weighted at the national level, but not at the regional or local authority area level. Weights are calculated for groups of similar local authorities, where these groups are defined by the Office of National Statistics UK area classifications, and they are based on the comparison with data from another Department for Communities and Local Government source on social housing data (Local Authority Housing Statistics).

For further information on weighting, see the Quality Report.

Suppression rules and disclosure control

Values of 1 or 2 have been suppressed, mainly to avoid possible risk of people’s identity being revealed. This is consistent with the way the confidentiality of data within the Continuous Recording (CORE) system is maintained.

The Continuous Recording (CORE) system records information anonymously and maintains absolute confidentiality on tenants’ circumstances. Access to record-level information is only available through a licence agreement.

Further information on CORE disclosure practices can be found on the CORE website (PDF).

Rounding

Percentages have been rounded to the nearest whole number.

Quality and methodology information

Data sources

Source

Type of data

Administrative data

Type of statistic

Official statistics

Publisher

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

Publication frequency

Quarterly

Purpose of data source

CORE provides valuable information about new social housing lettings, sales, tenants and buyers across England. This information is used by government bodies and organisations to inform social housing funding, regulatory and housing policy decisions.

Download the data

Percentage of income spent on rent for new social lettings - Spreadsheet (csv) 27 KB

This files contains the following: Measure, Ethnicity, Ethnicity_type, Time, Time_type, Geography_code, Geography_name. Geography_type, Value