Families in Wrexham and Flintshire may be facing homelessness due to a lack of affordable rental properties and increasing high demand. 

A family that wanted to stay anonymous has been living in Wrexham for the past two and a half years but is now facing eviction after their landlady decided to sell. 

The mother of one said: "We have just over six months to find somewhere.

“I am so frightened. I cannot afford rent of £700 and above with the rise of food."

“We moved to Wrexham from 60 miles away for a better life, I'm not sure we will be able to stay here."

After struggling to find other affordable rental properties in the area the family is desperate to find somewhere, she said: "It will come to a point that even if it's a one-bedroom flat we will have to take it.”

In November of last year, The Leader spoke to Sion Bithell, sales manager for Northwood letting agency in Wrexham about the demand for rental in Wrexham.

Mr Bithell said: "Landlords have the pick of tenants."

He continued: "Supply is at an all time low, much lower than in the last 10 or 15 years and the demand is also incredibly high which has pushed the rental market to an unaffordable level."

According to Mr Bithell, in the first ten minutes of a property being advertised it tends to receive around 20 phone calls. 

READ MORE: More private renters in Flintshire and Wrexham than 10 years ago

The Latham family, who also live in Wrexham, have viewed over 40 different rental properties in and around the city after receiving an eviction notice in December of last year.

Colin Latham said: "It has been horrendous, we have cried, shouted, tried every avenue we can think of.

"When we moved into the property five years ago rental prices were around £650-£800 per month, now they are between £1,200 - £1,500."

He added: "We are losing our whole life, friends, work, my children's life will also be in chaos.

“This house is all our little girls have ever known.”

Despite having good previous references for rentals, the family has been continually rejected for properties and has reached out to Wrexham Council for help. 

The family has been informed they may be moved into a hotel while awaiting social housing, a prospect which is very concerning to the family of nine. 

Colin continued: "We have two sons suffering from ADHD or ADD so change is particularly hard for them."

The Leader recently reported on the pressures on Wrexham Council’s capacity to meet housing needs.

In October of last year figures indicated that there were 4,006 people on the general waiting list for local authority housing as well as 215 households in temporary accommodation, and 720 people presenting as homeless.

MP Sarah Atherton commented on the increasing social housing crisis in Wrexham, saying: "It is fast becoming one of the key local issues constituents contact me for help with.   

"Last week I visited Ty Dewr, which provides supported living for veterans. Their main focus was the difficulty they face with accessing affordable and permanent housing. 

"In Wrexham, there are over 4,000 individuals on the waiting list for a council house. Most worryingly, in critical band one, those who need emergency housing because of their vulnerability, these people are waiting well over a year! This is unacceptable.  

"The reasons for the lack of council housing are numerous, including the length of time taken to turn around council houses between tenants and costly regulations imposed by Rent Smart Wales, which has resulted in private landlords selling up and tenants applying for council housing.  

"On top of this, the Welsh Government’s phosphates policy has blocked any new houses from being built over the past year or so."

Concerns surrounding the availability of affordable rentals appears to also be present across Flintshire. 

Niraj Patel from Buckley fears that he is being "priced out of the market" due to rocketing rental prices. 

He said: "I am struggling to find any rental property in the Buckley area.

"I have two small kids and we need to stay as close to the area as possible in order not to disrupt the school."

Beverley Cowell from Connah's Quay said "I can't find affordable private rent and am about to be evicted from one, as the landlord wants it back."

Buckley mother Sophie Gilruth, who lives in a rental property with her young baby, has been trying to save for a house deposit, however, with the rising cost of bills and expenses has found it increasingly difficult. 

She said: "I never go on holiday, no takeaways, no meals out. I literally get money and spend what I have to, pay for baby group so she can socialise and have even started to cut down using the car."

MP for Delyn, Rob Roberts said he has seen a "steady decline in housebuilding generally from an already low figure."

He continued: "In 2020 just 125 properties were built in Delyn compared to a national average per constituency of 188.  In 2021 Delyn saw 109 new properties against a national average of 235 and in 2022 there was a grand total of 42 new properties built in Delyn against a national average of 242.  

"As we can see, the national average is going up each year yet the housebuilding in Delyn is going down.  Over the past three years therefore, Delyn has only had 276 new properties compared with a national average of 665 – less than 42%."

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: “We believe that everybody has a right to a decent, affordable home and are committed to supporting the housing sector during this period of significant demand.

“We are working with partners to tackle phosphate pollution which poses a serious risk to the health and wellbeing of our future generations if left unchecked.

“While we prioritise building affordable housing at pace in Wales, the resilience of our river ecosystems and the benefits they provide – including top quality drinking and bathing water to benefit our communities, our businesses and our wildlife – must not be jeopardised.”

Welsh Government has advised that a second meeting of the River Pollution Summit is set to meet on March 8 to drive progress in implementing sustainable solutions to improve water quality in our rivers.

  • For news sent directly to your inbox, sign up for Leader newsletters and breaking news email alerts here

Following this meeting, it will be announcing an Action Plan to reduce nutrient concentrations and relieve the pressure on housing and development to support the needs of the people and communities of Wales.

In 2022-23 Welsh Government is investing £89m of funding support to local authorities and registered social landlords to create much-needed extra housing capacity – this is expected to deliver over 1,300 more homes in the next 18 months.

In addition, £50million has been allocated over the next two years to bring up to 2,000 long-term empty properties across Wales back into use through a national empty homes grant scheme.