Does it make economic sense to intervene early when young people become homeless?
This Oxera report is designed to inform decision-making in the area of homelessness policy and, in particular, in relation to policies for the young homeless. Given the significant scale of youth homelessness in the UK, substantial costs are incurred at a societal level, including both direct expenditure in providing support as well as the costs of adverse outcomes, such as crime, mental health problems, drug abuse and lower employment. It is therefore critical to intervene at the early stages to avoid escalation of the conditions. This report assesses these benefits of early intervention by Centrepoint. As such, the focus is on a traditional cost–benefit analysis (CBA) in order to ascertain whether each £1 that Centrepoint spends on interventions now is higher or lower than likely future public expenditure, should this intervention not take place at the current time.