Homelessness and Housing Options Statistics Published

A National and Official Statistics Publication for Scotland.

Scottish Local Authorities received around 17,100 applications for homelessness assistance during April to September 2016, 3% lower than in the same period in 2015. However, the number of children in temporary accommodation increased by 826 children (+17%), comparing figures at 30 September 2016 with the same date one year ago.

Scotland’s Chief Statistician today released the following two publications:

  • Homelessness in Scotland: Update to 30 September 2016  
  • Housing Options (PREVENT1) Statistics in Scotland: Update to 30 September 2016

Overall, there were 10,570 households in temporary accommodation as at 30 September 2016 – an increase of 97 households (+1%) compared with one year earlier. Over a quarter (3,174 households) included children or a pregnant member of the household - an increase of 355 households (+13%) since the same time last year. 

As at 30 September 2016, 27 households were in unsuitable temporary accommodation, with 12 breaches of The Homeless Persons (Unsuitable Accommodation) (Scotland) Order 2014.

With respect to Housing Options, local authorities received 24,355 approaches during April to September 2016, a reduction of 4,605 (-16%) compared to the same six months in 2015. The most common activities undertaken were providing general housing/tenancy advice and informing households of their rights under the homelessness legislation. 

For approaches closed during the period of 1 April to 30 September 2016, 44% went on to make a homelessness application, 22% remained in their current accommodation and 17% found alternative accommodation. 17% had an unknown outcome or contact was lost. There is considerable variation in the mix of outcomes by Local Authority area, reflecting the locally developed nature of Housing Options policies.

The figures released today were produced in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.


 The full statistical publication is available at:


The Homelessness in Scotland publication is a National Statistics publication which  provides information on homelessness applications, assessments and outcomes in the period 1 April to 30 September 2016. It also provides snapshot data on households in temporary accommodation on 30 September 2016 together with data on the implementation of The Homeless Persons (Unsuitable Accommodation) (Scotland) Order 2014.

The Housing Options (PREVENT1) Statistics in Scotland publication gives an overview of key trends and features of Housing Options work in Scotland over the period 1 April  to 30 September 2016.  These statistics are being published as experimental statistics in order to involve users and stakeholders in their development and as a means to build in quality at an early stage. These official statistics have not yet been assessed by the UK Statistics Authority and have therefore not been designated as National Statistics at this stage.

Housing Options has been described as: “a process which starts with housing advice when someone approaches a local authority with a housing problem. This means looking at an individual’s options and choices in the widest sense. This approach features early intervention and explores all possible tenure options, including council housing, housing associations and the private rented sector. The advice can also cover personal circumstances which may not necessarily be housing related, such as debt advice, mediation and mental health issues”.

Official statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff – more information on the standards of official statistics in Scotland can be accessed at: http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Statistics/About

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