West Lothian housing waiting list reaches over 10,000

It has been revealed that there are over 10,000 current applications for social housing in West Lothian.

The West Lothian Courier submitted a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to West Lothian Council and discovered that as of April 7, there are 10,509 applications on the common register for housing.

A previous FOI revealed that there were 8000 new applications for social housing made in West Lothian in the last three years.

The West Lothian Courier submitted another to get more information on the number of people on the list and also on the number of homes being allocated.

The new FOI also revealed that there were 400 fewer homes allocated in the last year, compared to the year previous.

From March 16 2020 to March 16 2021, 1705 applications for social housing in West Lothian were met during this period.

However, before the COVID-19 pandemic, from March 2019 to March 2020, 2105 applications for housing were met.

The figures also showed that from 2018 to 2019, 1411 applications were housed during this period

In 2017 to 2018 another 1040 applications were housed and in 2016 to 2017 there were 1051 applications met during this period

A West Lothian Council spokesperson said: “The Common Housing Register is made up of Almond Housing Association, Weslo Housing, Housing Associations, and the council.

“The number of applications on the register is published on the council’s website where details on how to apply are available.”

Information regarding the number of homes allocated to those on the social housing waiting list is reported on a regular basis at public committees and is subsequently published online for anyone to access.

The spokesperson added: “Applications come from people with a wide variety of circumstances. It’s important to recognize that those who apply and are on the list include existing council tenants, housing association tenants, home owners and private housing tenants all looking for an alternative home.

“And also from individuals that are homeless. Despite increasing the local affordable housing portfolio by over 900 homes over the past five years, demand for affordable housing continues to outweigh supply in West Lothian and that is a similar position across many areas of Scotland.

“The council recently announced that it will invest over £80 million over the next two years with significant resources invested in the creation of new homes.

“The delivery, supply and demand for affordable housing remains one of the most complex and challenging issues that local authorities and partner landlords deal with.

“For councils, there is simply not enough affordable housing properties to house everyone who applies for one.”

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