Government data revealed today by the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government makes for grim reading.
The least bad news is that overall numbers of housing increased year on year. But the small print of the release demonstrates a number of concerns whereby the UK’s dwelling stock is going backwards.
Owner occupancy has long been the pride of our nation – an aspirational culture that has been taught for generations and by generations that owning a property is a necessity in one’s life path. Yet, over recent years, the proportion of people that own a property has reduced from 70% in 2001 to 63% today.
At the same time, privately rented properties whilst increasing in number since 2014, this year has seen a decline.
Worse, much needed social and affordable housing is in a tail-spin – dropping by 1000 units plus a further reduction in ‘other’ public sector stock by 13,000 since last year. In other words, with our population increasing and social housing waiting lists lengthening, the country has less and less suitable properties to house people that most need support.
Incidentally, as if we have not outlined the crisis bleakly enough here, the amount of empty homes has, in a pathetic irony, risen by a whopping 5.3% year on year – to a total of 634,453. Yes, over six hundred thousand properties are currently empty whilst, frankly, local and national government sit on their hands and oversee a mismatch between supply and demand.
Outraged? We are…