Housing survey exposure

NEARLY two thirds of the town’s shared accommodation fails to meet Government standards, it has emerged.

So-called houses of multiple occupation (HMOs) – where homes are divided between tenants often sharing kitchens or bathrooms – make up eight per cent of the property in Hastings and St Leonards, way over the two per cent national average.

And with 64 per cent of the 2,800 HMOs falling below the National Homes Standard, and concerns over crime, tenants’ rights and anti-social behaviour, Hastings Borough Council (HBC) wants to hear residents’ views.

Councillor Trevor Webb, lead member for housing at HBC, said: “The council is concerned about the social impact and levels of deprivation if this figure continues to rise.

“The growth in student population, together with changes in the homelessness law and the housing benefit system, could lead to an increase in demand for the small affordable units of accommodation that HMOs provide.”

The consultation is available at www.hastings.gov.uk and will last ten weeks, with a chance to win a £200 shopping trip for anyone who enters.