Homelessness Prevention and Rough Sleeper Strategy

Priority 2: Minimise the use and improve the quality of temporary accommodation, and end the use of hotels

Why is this important?

Our main focus is to prevent homelessness and our long-term goal is to reduce the use of all forms of temporary accommodation. However, where homelessness cannot be avoided, it’s important to make sure that we have sufficient, good quality temporary accommodation available, and ensure stays in temporary accommodation are as brief as possible by supporting them to move on to settled housing sooner.

Recently the Council has made more use of hotel accommodation to supplement the Council’s own temporary accommodation units. The Council strives to ensure that stays in hotels are provided as a last resort and for as brief as possible. Unlike self-contained accommodation with facilities such as kitchen and cooking facilities, hotels do not provide suitable provisions to enable households to eat healthily and within an affordable budget. They are also very expensive to provide. Therefore, we want to work towards ending the use of hotels as temporary accommodation.

What we have done so far:

  • Since March 2022 we have reduced the number of households living in hotels from 96 to 16 as of January 2023 (reduction of 80).
  • Since March 2022 we have reduced the overall number of households living in temporary accommodation from 202 to 111 (reduction of 91).
  • We have set up four temporary accommodation dwellings for hospital discharges, providing a safe place to live and ensuring there is a plan to move on into more settled housing in place.
  • We have provided two accessible temporary furnished accommodation properties for people with a disability.
  • We have increased temporary accommodation for households fleeing domestic abuse, providing up to 14 furnished properties and support for households.
  • We have recruited specialist domestic abuse support workers who support households who are experiencing homelessness and in temporary accommodation.

Over the next 3 years:

  • We will seek to end the use of expensive nightly paid hotels.
  • To support this goal, as an interim measure we will increase temporary accommodation available to the Council from 114 to 130 by March 2025.
  • Over the longer term we want to reduce the use of temporary accommodation through a stronger focus on prevention.
  • We will review the current temporary accommodation portfolio to ensure it continues to meet local need.
  • We will improve the quality standards of temporary accommodation by developing temporary accommodation lettable standards.
  • We will improve reletting times of our temporary accommodation.

Impact Measures:

  • End the routine use of hotels as temporary accommodation by March 2025.
  • Reduced the average time spent in temporary accommodation.