About 200 people have been sleeping rough in Stoke-on-Trent in the past year, it has been claimed.
Floral tributes have been left at the scene of the fatal blaze
Two people died and more are feared dead following a suspicious fire last week at a disused factory in Hanley where homeless people slept.
The city council has said that on average, just three people sleep rough each night in the city.
But the social landlord Brighter Futures claims the problem is much worse in the city.
Its chief executive Jill Brown has written to elected mayor Mark Meredith calling for an inquiry.
A number of floral tributes have been left at the scene of last Wednesday's blaze at the Hamilton Reid building.
The BBC understands the two people confirmed dead are a man in his early 30s and a woman in her mid 20s.
They have not been formally identified.
Ten people have been arrested and bailed during the police investigation into the fire.