Public attitudes to housing in England
Published: July 2011
This report, commissioned by DCLG, looks at what people in England really think about a range of housing issues and their aspirations, expectations and experiences in relation to housing.
There is a continued preference for home ownership among the vast majority of the public
- 86% of the public would prefer to buy, a figure which has remained unchanged since the mid-1990s (85% in 1996).
- The main advantages of owning a home are that it is seen as a good investment (26%); more secure than renting (23%); and gives you the freedom to do what you want with it (21%).
The majority of renters say they would prefer to buy
- If they had a free choice, 68% of renters would choose to buy, but only 17% expect to buy in the near future.
- The majority of all three ‘renter’ groups would prefer to buy rather than rent: 77% of private tenants; 61% of housing association tenants; and 58% of local authority tenants.
Fewer people now would advise a newly married couple to buy a home as soon as possible
- 54% would advise a newly married couple to buy a home as soon as possible, down from 71% in 2004.
- 45% expect house prices in their local area to go up in the next year. This is up from just 22% in 2008.
Most people find it easy to meet their mortgage payments
- 79% say it is easy to meet their mortgage payments, and 68% say they never worry about not being able to pay the mortgage.
Only about 3 in 10 would support new homes being built in the local area
- Overall, 28% would support new homes being built in the local area, while 46% would oppose this.
- Strongest support comes from people living in a big city (42%), compared to 29% of people in the suburbs of a big city, 27% of those in a small city or town, and 24% of those living in a country village.
This report analyses data from the 2010 British Social Attitudes (BSA) survey.
Read the report