Tenants: The People on the Frontline of Britain's Housing Emergency (Hardback)
  • Tenants: The People on the Frontline of Britain's Housing Emergency (Hardback)
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Tenants: The People on the Frontline of Britain's Housing Emergency (Hardback)

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£20.00
Hardback 352 Pages
Published: 19/05/2022
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Waterstones Says

Searing and passionate, Spratt's essential volume places first hand testimony front and centre in a devastating enquiry into the state of rented accommodation in modern Britain and how decades of bad decisions have left huge numbers of tenants extremely vulnerable.

Tony is facing eviction instead of enjoying retirement; Limarra isn't 'homeless enough' to get help from the council; and for Kelly and her asthmatic son Morgan, another new rented house is a matter of life and death. This is twenty-first century Britain, where millions are trying to build lives in privately rented accommodation, which creates profit for landlords but not safe and stable homes for tenants. This fierce and moving account tells their stories, and the story of how we built a housing system where homelessness is a constant threat.

Award-winning housing journalist Vicky Spratt traces decades of bad decisions to show how and why the British dream of homeownership has withered and the safety net of social housing has unravelled. She has spent years talking with those on the frontline all around the country. Here, she illuminates the ways this national emergency cuts across generations, class and education and is devastating our health, destroying communities and transforming the social, economic and political landscape beyond recognition. But it is not irreversible.

The Covid-19 pandemic showed that radical action is possible, and there are real steps we can take to give everyone the chance of a good home. This urgent, ground breaking book leads the way.

Publisher: Profile Books Ltd
ISBN: 9781788161275
Number of pages: 352
Weight: 560 g
Dimensions: 240 x 164 x 36 mm
Edition: Main


MEDIA REVIEWS

So important - Emma Gannon, Ctrl Alt Del

A must-read that explores the housing crisis and its devastating impact on our health, communities and political landscape. - Cosmopolitan

A major new book on the history and politics of renting - Evening Standard

There is nobody better placed to write a book that tells the stories of 'Britain's housing shame' - Metro

Fascinating, incendiary, rigorously well-researched. Tenants should be compulsory reading for every politician - Pandora Sykes

It is impossible to read this book without becoming almost incapacitated with rage. This astute analysis examines the toxic lottery of Britain's housing crisis,layingbare our state's lack of fitness for purposeand the devastating outcomes of having no fixed abode - Lynsey Hanley, The Guardian

An astonishing feat of journalism, storytelling and compassion. I thought I knew about Britain's housing crisis - I did not. ... The system is designed so that the people who rely on it the most feel disempowered - Vicky's journalism is single-handedly changing that. - Lucia Osborne-Crowley

An important book by a journalist who has done so much to shine a light on (and change) Britain's broken housing sector - Lewis Goodall, Policy Editor at BBC Newsnight

Open-minded and formidably informed, Spratt is a compelling narrator. Her stories of people wrenched from their homes by so-called no-fault evictions are startling and infuriating ... Like baring your bank account to be probed by a landlord's algorithm, the book is an experience so bracing it forces you to step back, look at the whole wretched system and think: "Why do we put up with this?" - The Times

Vicky Spratt is one of the best equipped people to wade into this country's housing crisis ... [Her book's] radical plan for rectifying a broken system will leave you feeling hopeful for the future. - Refinery29

A copy should be handed to the "people who make decisions about policy" and to anyone who thinks that young people can't buy homes as they "don't work hard enough" - just read this. - Rebecca Smith, The Skinny

Politicians would do well to read "Tenants", in order to understand the world lived in by so many voters. [This] isn't just an authentic book, it isn't just an accurate book, it's that rarest of things - a timely book that tells the reality of renting right now and it doesn't disappoint. - Ben Reeve Lewis, co-founder Safer Renting, Cambridge House

Vicky Spratt's excoriating Tenants shows how Generation Rent is being let down, and reminds us that the power dynamic between renters and their landlords was not always so skewed. Open-minded and formidably informed, Spratt is a compelling narrator, charting the way that governments since the 1980s absolved themselves of responsibility for housing and stripped back protections for renters. [Tenants] is an experience so bracing it forces you to step back, look at the whole wretched system and think: "Why do we put up with this?" That should have politicians feeling rather scared. - James Riding, The Times

"I really haven't a clue how to set about the job." Harold Macmillan committed those words to his diary in 1951, shortly after Winston Churchill asked him to sort out Britain's housing crisis. Macmillan lacked the counsel of Vicky Spratt. - The Times

Important - Shelter

Leading Journalist Vicky Spratt's important new book [powerfully] blends an overview of political failure with the personal experiences of those going through eviction. - Alastair Harper, Shelter

Spratt not only provides an overview and analysis of Britain's housing history, welfare state and the plethora of issues renters are facing today, she gives solutions - readers are urged to think big, think radically and act fast. - Diyora Shadijanova, Huck Magazine

Tenants is as much an astute political and social analysis as it is a moving, radical call to arms. ... You'll come away from this book seething, but stay armed with Spratt's clear view of how we solve this crisis - Anna Caffola, The Face Magazine

Vicky Spratt reveals how our dysfunctional housing system is causing dire consequences for people drawing on personal experiences from across the country, [and] calls for a radical reimagination of the housing system. - Adele Walton, Dazed

Vicky Spratt's ferocious debut Tenants is a comprehensive account of a dysfunctional system, in which constant precarity has become the norm for millions across Britain. ... relentlessly clear-sighted ... rigorous as well as deeply empathetic - Francisco Garcia, i Paper

Reading this drove me into a fury - David Freeman, Author Archive

Densely researched and makes plain how paper thin is the divide between the cheaper end of renting and being thrown out on to the street ... Argues convincingly that investing in more social housing would benefit everyone, not just those who live in it. - TLS

An urgent and necessary exploration of the housing crisis from one of Britain's leading journalists - Sirin Kale

Vicky Spratt has written the essential guide to understanding Britain's housing crisis. Anyone who has ever questioned the process that transformed our homes into speculative financial assets needs to read this book and then send a copy to their MP. - Dr Kojo Koram, Birkbeck College, University of London

The national need for living space is desperate - as illustrated in Tenants: The People on the Frontline of Britain's Housing Emergency by the journalist Vicky Spratt. Show[ing how] the country is blighted by landlordism, homelessness and Thatcher's legacy, [Tenants reveals] the human cost of a genuinely kafka-esque bureaucratic system. - Anoosh Chakelian, The New Statesman

Vicky Spratt's shocking and incisive indictment of private renting in Britain describes how functional and productive lives unravel as people lose their homes, sense of self and feeling of belonging in the world. Packed with powerful narratives but also a number of policy alternatives, [Tenants] is based on myriad human stories showing home as a central aspect of people's lives and cornerstone of trust in society and its institutions. The case studies are shocking and sobering .. [but] the shifting nature of the discourse around the housing crisis is significant as they herald a real possibility of change. - Anna Minton, The Financial Times

A thorough and devastating analysis of Britain's current housing crisis. - Sadhbh O'Sullivan, Refinery 29

Illuminating and emotive - [Tenants is] a rallying cry and a must read - Georgia Healey, Sister Magazine

Searing and passionate, Spratt's essential volume places first hand testimony front and centre in a devastating enquiry into the state of rented accommodation in modern Britain and how decades of bad decisions have left huge numbers of tenants extremely vulnerable. - Waterstones, Best Books of 2022

An important examination of how the UK has found itself in such a bad housing crisis that one third of young people today will be renting privately "from cradle to grave". Vicky Spratt is the housing correspondent of the i newspaper and the founder of the Make Renting Fair campaign. She explains how governments since the 1980s have steadily moved away from providing affordable rental homes for people while stripping back most protections for tenants. The case studies of renters in the private sector whose lives are derailed after losing a secure home are heartbreaking and shocking. Whether you are a tenant or a landlord, or indeed a government minister, this is a vital read. - Tom Knowles, The Times Best Business Books of 2022

Tenants charts the diabolical state of housing in Britain, written by the i's brilliant housing correspondent, Vicky Spratt. Tenants doesn't hit you round the head with a gazillion dispassionately-listed facts and figures, nor is it full of unnecessarily complicated housing jargon - instead, it invites you into the world of Britain's renters, painting a vivid picture of their plight in the process. Using their stories as starting points, Spratt carefully untangles the thorny mess of the housing crisis, explaining how we got here, who exactly is impacted and how we can build a fairer society with shelter for all. - Dazed Magazine Best Books of the Year

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“One to”

(Fairly sure the only other review here was written by a landlord).

Spratt tackles social and political issue of housing by speaking with people up and down the UK, providing deeply moving accounts of the lives most... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 6

“Overrated”

Bought it as it was the FT book of the year.
The writer ignores the root of the housing crisis: lack of supply. It is blaming landlords for providing a rental home. Blaming landlords will not solve the problem.... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 1

“A powerful and important read”

The reality of renting in the 21st century is hard and Vicky Spratt's book details the reality for some of those on the frontline. As well as sharing their stories she makes a powerful case for radical reform,... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 0

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