Two out of three people think there is a national affordable housing crisis, finds new poll

Thursday 18th of October 2018

• Findings revealed as new Affordable Housing Commission launches
to tackle the crisis
• Seven in ten renters say they would need to win the lottery to buy
their own home
• One in two people with housing costs have faced financial difficulties
in the last year alone because housing costs are unaffordable

An alarming poll by YouGov for the new Affordable Housing Commission, which launches
today, has revealed that 64% of people in England and Wales think the country is in the
grips of an affordable housing crisis.

The new Commission, to be chaired by Lord Best, has been established by leading think
tank The Smith Institute with the support of the Nationwide Foundation to examine
the causes and effects of the affordability crisis and propose solutions.

This will include: 

Looking at whether the existing definition of affordable housing is fit for purpose, amid
growing calls for it to be scrapped. The past few years have seen examples of homes
costing £1million being marketed as affordable homes.

The survey also revealed that as a result of housing costs, in the last year alone half of
people (47%) have faced financial difficulties, such as borrowing to meet basic expenses,
being unable to save or struggling to pay household bills.

For the majority of those surveyed the picture is set to become bleaker still. Over half
(52%) stated that housing costs will become less affordable in the next ten years and
just one in ten (11%) thinking costs will become more affordable.

The poll found these issues are often being felt most acutely by renters. Six in ten (59%)
renters stated that housing costs will become less affordable over the next decade. Half of
renters (47%) have been unable to save for long periods because of high housing costs in
the last year and just over a quarter (28%) have used a credit card to meet basic expenses.
Four in ten renters (39%) also stated that they would not be able to meet their housing
costs for longer than a month if they or their partner lost their job.

Tpas chief executive Jenny Osbourne has been part of this commission. For more information about the work visit