England has the lowest number of houses available in the developed world, and the highest rate of inadequate housing in Europe at 15%
Analysis from the Home Builders Federation has found that England is the worst place in Europe for those seeking a home, with the lowest rates of available properties compared to its population of all OECD members, the benchmark for developed nations worldwide.
The UK has some of the oldest housing stock in the developed world, as a result existing English homes are also in the worst condition of all European countries, with 15% failing required quality standards – significantly worse than poorer Eastern European nations such as Lithuania, where 11% of homes are substandard, and Poland, where only 6% do not reach the required standard.
Only 7% of British homes were built after 2001, compared to countries like Spain’s 18.5%, and Portugal, with 16%. The overall greater age of UK housing means there are many houses that are not energy efficient or not even safe to reside in.
As of 2020, 15% of UK homes did not meet the Decent Homes Standard, a measure set by the Government which requires homes to be in a reasonable state of repair with reasonably modern facilities and services. The low quality and high prices of English housing are key contributors to UK housing stock being the worst in Europe.
Much-needed new housing is not being delivered
The Government’s target of 300,000 new homes per year by the mid-2020s seems further away than ever, as only 233,000 new homes were completed in 2021-22, and delivery in the first half of 2023 fell by 10%.
Analysis shows that record-breaking house building of 320,000 homes per year – nearly 100,000 more than current delivery – would be required for England to provide homes for its population in line with the OECD.
Stewart Baseley, executive chairman of the Home Builders Federation, said:
“It is widely acknowledged that Britain’s housing is in crisis, but this research shows just how badly we are falling behind our international peers.
“Decades of housing undersupply has produced startling consequences for people up and down the country looking for a decent home.
“Home builders want to be able to deliver new, high quality, energy efficient homes which will help solve our country’s housing crisis, and they expanded investment over the past decade. Sadly, developers are still too often hampered by a restrictive planning system, an anti-development mindset and short-term politics trumping the needs of communities.
“The country is in dire need of more high quality and energy efficient new homes. With an election looming and manifestos being considered, today’s research should act as a wake-up call, demonstrating the urgent need to act now to prevent us from falling even further behind.”
Credit - pbctoday.co.uk