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  1. ITV Report

Nearly 185,000 private renters in the West Country made mentally or physically ill by housing problems in the past year

Nearly half of private renters in the South West have said they've been mentally ill due to housing concerns. Credit: ITV News

Almost 185,000 adults who privately rent in the West Country have been made physically or mentally ill as a result of housing problems or worries.

The latest research by YouGov and housing charity Shelter reveals more than one in five private renters in the South West have felt physically ill or sick because of housing problems in the past year.

Problems include struggling to afford rental payments, living in poor conditions and the threat of eviction.

41%
Percentage of private renters that have experienced stress and anxiety due to housing concerns.

More than 350,000 renters in the West Country say they have suffered from stress and anxiety as a direct result of housing concerns, with 243,000 saying they have kept them awake at night.

This time of year can be especially stressful and difficult for families who are struggling to cope with big rent bills, or things like cold and mouldy homes during the winter months. Every day at Shelter we see the toll that expensive, unstable or poor-quality private renting can take on people’s lives and their health. We know how easy it can be to lose hope and feel overwhelmed by these worries, but our message is that you do not have to face them alone.

– Andrea Deakin, Shelter emergency helpline manager

For support and advice if you are experiencing housing concerns, head to Shelter's website.