What’s not working

Authors: Reuben Young and Jack Fitzpatrick
Published by Peabody, in partnership with L&Q, November 2018

This report looks at research that asked three questions: 

  • Do higher rents disincentivise residents from finding work or working more hours?
  • Is this disincentive exacerbated by housing benefit?
  • What other factors contribute to residents’ decisions to find work or increase their hours?

Based on a survey with 450 residents of Peabody and L&Q, the report uses regression analyses to investigate whether there were differences in the change in working hours between groups on high or low rents: we found no statistically significant relationship between the level of rent and whether tenants increased their working hours.

We have therefore found no evidence that our tenants are incentivised by low rent or welfare. Our findings do, however, back up our qualitative findings that residents are typically prevented from working more hours by other factors, most notably childcare and their health.

Another notable finding was that many residents, who were not registered as long-term sick or disabled, were prevented from working by their health issues. Some may not be receiving the out-of-work benefits to which they are entitled. This is consistent with other Peabody research, including Health begins at home, that suggests that many people are not being picked up by support services, as well as our experience of supporting residents to appeal welfare decisions.

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