English Housing Survey

Posted on March 1, 2011 by Steady Eddy There have been 0 comments

Less Home Owners – More Extensions?

Housing Pressure Producing More Home Extensions?

Home Extension Pressure

Although the Government’s 2009-10 English Housing Survey (EHS – Dept. Communities & Local Government) only reports a fall of 300,000 in home ownership (14.8m > 14.5m), house renters have increased by 1.3m (2.1m > 3.4m) .

Since new house builder output only increased around 100,000, that suggests one heck of a lot of people are finding ways to ‘double-up’ in the way they occupy buildings. Although they don’t tell us whether this has come about by converting or extending existing buildings, this would seem to be the implication.

Energy & Other Improvements

This seems to be supported by the fact that SAP ratings for existing houses improved to 53 from 42, with rented property being improved more than private houses.

Additionally, there was a reduction of 1.1 million in ‘non-decent homes (6.7m –v- 7.4m)  over the year.  Again this was more so in the social rented sector than the in owner occupied homes. Damp continued to be a major problem, especially in the poorest non-decent homes.


The rate at which property is being improved may be increasing, meaning that non-improved homes could soon see their values declining vis-à-vis the rest of the market.  Also, the rate at which ‘doubling-up’, or home sharing, is occurring could be increasing.

However, when formal planning consents for extensions and improvements are considered, it may be that the planning system is acting against these being adequate and proper, relying instead on those things that can be achieved und the ‘permitted development’ rules.

Areas of Improvement

Notwithstanding this, key areas for improvement are clearly in energy efficiency measures and damp protection measures.  While the extent of these could be huge, out guess is that these are actually being linked via improved insulation.  As this is installed, so ‘cold spot’ condensation and related ‘damp patches’ will be reduced.

Don’t hesitate to send in any questions about these trends that you may have.

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