Daventry women hit hardest when it comes to affording rent

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The average woman in Daventry cannot afford to live alone, new analysis shows, with rental prices too high for their wages.

A leading gender equality think tank has called for urgen investment in social housing to address what is described as an affordibility “crisis”, which is hitting women hardest.

Housing charities define a home as unaffordable if the rent takes up 30% or more of a household’s earnings.

The median monthly rent for a one-bedroom property in Daventry was £545 in 2018-19, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics.

The median is a measure used to exclude extreme values which could skew the average.

Earnings figures, also from the ONS, show that women in the area – including both full and part-time workers – earned a median salary of £ 1,697 per month before tax in 2019.

That means the typical woman would have to fork out 32% of her salary to be able to afford to live alone. Local men earn an average of £2,779 per month, so would only have to give up 20% of their salary for the same property.

Across England, women would have to pay 38% of their salary on average to live alone, compared to 24% for men.

Dr Mary-Ann Stephenson, director of the Women’s Budget Group think tank, said a lack of affordable housing may trap women in violent relationships, and mean they are more likely to end up homeless.

In Daventry, average rents have risen twice as fast as local wages over the last eight years.