More than one in three working families would not be able to pay the rent or mortgage after one month if at least one of the breadwinners were to lose their job and not secure another straight away, according to a survey. The poll by YouGov, commissioned by the housing charity Shelter, found 37% of working families said they do not have enough savings to sustain them past a single month.
Just under a fifth of those polled, 23%, said they would not even be able to pay their first month's housing costs.
"These figures are stark a reminder that sky-high housing costs are leaving millions of working families stretched to breaking point, and barely scraping by from one paycheque to the next," said Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter.
"Any one of us could hit a bump along life's road, and at Shelter we speak to parents every day who, after losing their job or seeing their hours cut, are terrified of losing the roof over their children's heads too."
Household incomes have been weakened over the past few years by low wage growth, welfare cuts, and a rising cost of living, in particular housing costs.
The average house price increased 14% to £291,000 between 2011 and 2015, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS)show.
The government's Valuation Office Agency (VOA) data show the median monthly rent in England rose 14% to £650 over the same period. But ONS figures also show that median weekly pay rose by just 6.1% to £465 during those five years.