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  • Writer's pictureLondon Fact Check

Fact Check: Sadiq Khan is falling behind on affordable housing

The claim:

“Affordable homebuilding has hit record-breaking levels under Sadiq Khan” - Mayor's Press Release (source).


Analysis:

This claim is highly misleading, as the Mayor’s delivery of his affordable housing programme has been poor and he is well behind on his targets.


The claim relies on highly selective and misleading use of data. It is based on GLA figures which show that in the financial years 2019/20 and 2021/22, higher numbers of GLA-funded affordable homes were started than in any previous single year. Whilst this is technically correct, it omits other important information which shows he is well behind in delivering his affordable housing targets.


The Mayor was given £4.82bn from the government to build 116,000 affordable homes in his 2016-23 affordable housing programme. These must be started by March 2023. However, as of September 2022, with six months to go, 21,812 affordable homes are still yet to be started from this programme.


The Mayor was also given a further £4bn from the government to build 35,000 affordable homes between 2021 and 2026. To date, not a single home from this programme has been started.


Moreover, “homebuilding” usually refers to housing completions rather than starts. On this measure, affordable homebuilding is significantly lower than his predecessor and certainly not record-breaking. In the 6.5 years under Sadiq Khan’s mayoralty, between May 2016 and September 2022, just 48,288 affordable homes were completed, an average of 7,400 per year. By contrast, in the eight years between 2008 and 2016, under Mayor Boris Johnson, 94,001 affordable homes were completed, an average of 11,750 per year.


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