Tenants who live together as part of a couple but have split up may still be sharing a home because of financial difficulty, Shelter has claimed.

According to the housing charity, almost one-quarter of people surveyed said they know somebody or they themselves have had to stay in accommodation with a partner because they cannot afford not to.

Director of policy and campaigns at Shelter Kay Boycott said: "This may be more widespread a problem than we realised."

The organisation said that previously couples who split up would live apart but this is no longer the case for many.

"Real pressure"is added to a break up thanks to the situation, Ms Boycott said.

It was also reported that almost one in six people surveyed said that they argue with family members thanks to worries about housing costs.

The findings come during a week when UK divorce lawyers are at their busiest due to couples who decide to split after the Christmas period.

Written by Sarah FieldADNFCR-2002-ID-19544996-ADNFCR

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