Repairs and maintenance work on social housing has plummeted to a 20-year low, according to new figures.
A total of £7.1bn was spent on repairs and maintenance in the social housing sector in 2018, a fall of 24% since 1997, according to research by public sector procurement specialist Scape Group.
The report, titled The State of our Estates, found that in 1997, 32% of all housing repairs and maintenance work was carried out in the social sector, compared with 25% in 2018.
The analysis, based on government figures, also found that 36% of repairs and maintenance work in private and public sector homes in England over the past 20 years took place in London and the South East.
The average spend on repairs and maintenance was highest in London at £1,481 per property, compared with £530 in the North East.
Mark Robinson, chief executive of Scape Group, said that the amount being spent is “not enough” and that “everyone deserves a home fit for purpose”.
He added: “A concerning number of people live in substandard homes, which is affecting not only their physical and mental well-being, but their quality of life.”
The report also found that that over the same period, the number of homes in the UK increased by 3.8 million, and 4.5 million homes now fail the Decent Homes Standard across the public and private sectors.
In 1997, construction output was £29.4bn, the equivalent of £1,220 per property, the study found.
In the past two decades this has slid in real terms to £28.9bn – an average of £1,028 per property across Britain.