Almost half of UK adults who have never been online live in social housing, yet housing providers overestimate the costs and are unaware of the benefits of being 'digital by default'.

Research by Race Online 2012 and Housing Technology magazine shows that technology is the only way to meet the twin imperatives of social housing: letting landlords deliver more for less while fulfilling core social commitments to tenants: increasing financial literacy, education, employability, reducing social isolation.

As committed Digital Champions, we made this video to support this campaign. Please share it with friends and forward it to any social housing providers you might know.

Here are some of the other huge social and economic benefits to tenants and landlords of building the social housing sector’s digital capability:

  • Increased wellbeing and reduced isolation among over-65-year-olds, 3.1 million of whom don’t see a family, friend or neighbour even once a week. 1 million say they always or often feel lonely.
  • 4.1m adults in social housing not online could save £530m per year by paying bills and shopping online.
  • People are 25% more likely to get work online, and then earn 10% more with digital skills.
  • The estimated 150,000 children in offline social housing could boost future earnings by around £937m.
  • Local government could save around £360m per year by moving just one monthly contact/transaction with the 4.1m offline adults online.
  • Social Housing Providers could save more than £340m per year using more cost-effective communications to their 9.5m residents.

Affinity Sutton’s Director of Regeneration and Communities, Phil Miles, says that “Affinity Sutton sees digital inclusion a business and moral issue… web-based services a key element for our residents to do business with us… lack of web access hugely disadvantages our residents…”

Download the report here

If you want to find out how to become a Digital Champion and help get more people  online who live in social housing, visit

This video was only made possible with the kind support of RaceOnline2012Reason DigitalDovetail, Ella Byford, Tricia Reid and Gaydio.

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