Jim Fitzpatrick: We must tackle rising rents
COMMENTBy Jim Fitzpartick
Whoever you are, one of your first and foremost concerns will be the roof over your head.
This is especially so for Londoners where the price of renting has gone through the roof and kept going.
If you're renting in Tower Hamlets then the yearly rent can easily take up to 70% of earnings which makes saving for a deposit and moving up the ladder near impossible.
Whether you're living on the Isle of Dogs or in the middle of Poplar, the chances are that runaway rents are a problem.
Across the country people are now paying on average £1,020 a year more in rent than they did in 2010.
Rip-off charges, unpredictable jumps in rent and insecure tenancies add to the uncertainty when people should feel safe in their own home.
Last week Labour made some very important announcements that have the potential to reform the private rented sector so tenants and landlords can both get a fair deal.
The proposals include changing the law to make three-year tenancies the norm, protection against excessive rent increases and a ban on unfair letting agents' fees for tenants.
The private rental market has changed considerably and now the law has to as well.
More than 30,000 people rent privately in Tower Hamlets and this is a proposal which can make a difference to every one of them.
■ Jim Fitzpatrick is MP for Poplar and Limehouse