Local authorities are being urged to act now to meet the rising demand for emergency accommodation from homeless families.
New figures released today show a rise in the number of households left homeless.
According to SSentif, 50,290 families and individuals were classed as homeless in 2011/12, up from 40,020 in 2009/10, rise of 6,120.
Homeless Link, a charity that supports people and organisations working directly with homeless people in
"We have seen a steady increase in homelessness over the past few years," chief executive Rick Henderson said.
"We have voiced our concerns to local authorities and called on them to make sure they provide emergency accommodation to meet this rise in demand.
"It is clear that if we don’t act now this problem is only going to get bigger and more expensive for everyone."
Some local councils reported increases of more than 500 per cent over the last two years.
Broxbourne Council reported just one household as homeless in 2009/10, but in the year up to March there were a total of 119 households.
The largest increase in numbers was in
Judy Aldred, managing director of SSentif, said:
"Whilst these figures are perhaps not surprising given the state of the economy, some of the results for specific councils are quite shocking.
"By analysing the data at council level we were able to highlight some areas that are showing much greater increases than the national average.
"We were also able to cross reference the data with spending on homelessness which dropped in
Mr Henderson said there is “no reason why local authorities cannot provide help for homeless people”.
"Emergency accommodation such as Nightstops, which house young people until they are placed in longer term accommodation, can prevent those at risk of homelessness having to sleep on the streets," he said.
A spokesman for DCLG said: "We have maintained funding for homelessness grants at 2010-11 levels with £400m over the next four years, and on top of that we announced an additional £70m investment over the last year."