Affordable Accommodation for Key Workers: What are the options?

The Lack of Affordable Accommodation for Key Workers is a Major Issue

The issue of rising house prices and lack of affordable accommodation has long been a topic of conversation. However, the increasing problem is not only making it impossible to find affordable housing in London, but it’s now affecting our key workers at this critical time when we need them most. Many key workers are having to commute long hours to London and will often endure up to 12-hour shifts.

Having the option to live close to your workplace should, at the very least, be a possibility. With the significant increase in lack of affordable accommodation for key workers, what are the options available? The NHS are urgently trying to recruit more staff during this unprecedented time, and we need to be identifying living solutions without the concern of costs.

Accommodation Options for Key Workers

Fewer options are available when it comes to affordable accommodation for key workers in London, but The LOWE Group can offer a stable and sustainable solution in the short term; our guardian schemes allow essential key workers, as well as creatives and professionals, to become property guardians. A property guardian is someone who supplies live-in security for vacant buildings in exchange for low-cost accommodation.

Guardian schemes are by no means the answer to the housing crisis, but they can provide more benefits than traditional tenancy: as a LOWE Guardian, there is only a 28-day notice period, so people can move on quickly if their situation changes, and are not tied down by long contracts or burdened with expensive deposits. Guardianships also provide sense of community, and we extensively vet all our guardians, selecting only those who are the most socially responsible.

Become a Guardian with the LOWEkey Prioritisation Programme

To actively help those working on the front line, we have introduced our LOWEkey Prioritisation Programme. This is a dedicated programme which prioritises accommodation for key workers in our properties, at genuinely affordable prices; on average property guardians save between 50%-60% on conventional rental costs.

The solution is mutually beneficial because a guardian will look after the property that they’re residing in, whilst providing the landlord with a cost-effective security solution to managing their vacant buildings, mitigating risks from squatters and other issues that come with a vacant building.

Who is Eligible for Our Key Workers Scheme?

When we are handed a new property, we contact local hospitals, schools and our wider network, to prioritise key workers looking for safe, secure and affordable accommodation close to where they work. We have more than 750 property guardians living with us, 40% of whom are key workers.

The type of accommodation on offer is only provided on a temporary basis, and a lot of younger people see it as such, finding that it suits their needs very well, so it is a good solution for key workers for the short-term. Unfortunately, it is not suitable for families with dependants.

Turn your Vacant Property into Key Worker homes

We provide hundreds of key workers with affordable living opportunities through vacant properties. If you’re a landlord looking for cost-effective, live-in security, contact us today at and find out how our LOWEkey Prioritisation scheme can benefit you.

Alternatively, if you are a key worker looking for low-cost accommodation find out more information on How to Become a Property Guardian, the requirements and how you can apply today.