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England needs to build extra 1.5m homes in next five years, says LSE co-authored report

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Research for the Town and Country Planning Association co-authored by Christine Whitehead, Professor of Housing at LSE London, has found that young people across the country are struggling to live independently because of the cost of housing.

How Many Homes shows housing shortages and the resultant high prices and rents mean that young people are living with parents or in house shares for longer, rather than forming a household of their own. Rising student debt levels and potential future welfare reform are likely to make their position even more difficult.

Christine Whitehead said: “One of the biggest concerns is that couples aged between 25 and 34 – at the time when family formation is at its highest -  are expected to be less well housed in 2031 than their counterparts in 2011. And if house building cannot be increased, at least to the projected levels, other household groups will find themselves in the same boat.”

The research also shows that the government is already falling short of its targets to build new homes. Only 54% of the homes required have been built since 2011. To catch up by 2020, with the number of homes suggested by the projections 310,000 extra homes a year are needed over the next 5 years.

Of the new homes needed, 55% are needed in London and the surrounding area. In contrast, in the north east, the number of new households needed is expected to only rise by 11% over 20 years.

The research, based on statistics from the Department of Communities and Local Government and Office of National Statistics, was conducted by Neil McDonald, (previously Chief Executive of the National Housing and Planning Advice Unit) and Professor Christine Whitehead. It was launched in Parliament on 4 November 2015 and funded by the Lady Margaret Patterson Osborn Trust, and Places for People.

Posted 6 November 2015

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