HARD-UP families in Warwick District spend more of their cash on housing costs than in any other area of the Midlands.
Couples with one child and low earnings, living in two bedroom homes, use an average of 48 per cent of their net income to cover their mortgages, or 43 per cent where the property is rented.
For childless couples living in one bedroom homes, around 38 per cent of income is spent on mortgages and 40 per cent on rent.
The figures – published by an independent think tank last year – have been highlighted by Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Warwick and Leamington, Lynnette Kelly, who believes they reflect a broader problem.
She said: “Hard working people are suffering from a cost-of-living crisis that means many are still worse off than they were in 2010 because of the priorities of this failing Government.
“The problem is particularly acute for the growing number of private renters in Warwick and Leamington.
“There are more private renters as a proportion of the population in Warwick District – 17 per cent – than anywhere else in Warwickshire, including a large number of young professionals.”
Ms Kelly added she believed last week’s budget had done nothing to address the problem of housing affordability, nor the wider cost of living crunch.
But Warwick and Leamington MP Chris White defended the government’s financial plans.
He said: “As a result of the economic situation we inherited, the government has had to take difficult decisions to get the country’s finances back on track.
“But I’m reassured to see that these decisions have delivered a positive trend in local employment. Unemployment in Warwick and Leamington has reduced by 49 per cent between April 2010 and February 2014.
“Youth unemployment, moreover, has come down 54 per cent between April 2010 and February 2014. The reality behind these figures is that people are now getting back into work.”