This year, 320,000 people were recorded as homeless in Britain, analysis from housing charity Shelter suggests.
It is a rise of 13,000, or 4%, on last year's figures and equivalent to 36 new people becoming homeless every day.
One in every 200 Britons is either sleeping rough or living in temporary accommodation, such as hostels and B&Bs.
London has the highest rate of homelessness, but it is growing fastest in the Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber, and north-west England, the analysis says.
Chief executive of the charity Polly Neate said: "These new figures show that homelessness is having a devastating impact on the lives of people right across the country. Due to the perfect storm of spiralling rents, welfare cuts and a total lack of social housing, record numbers of people are sleeping out on the streets or stuck in the cramped confines of a hostel room. We desperately need action now to change tomorrow for the hundreds of thousands whose lives will be blighted by homelessness this winter."