40 facts: homes, housing and house building today

19 September 2018

a plt of new build homes with red and grey roofs

There are many different sources of information on housing and house building and it can be very difficult to find the fact you are looking for.  The NHBC Foundation has brought together key information and facts in its new illustrated guide 40 facts: homes, housing and house building today.

Five areas are covered in the guide, which looks at the type of homes built, who we build them for and where we build them.  The contribution of housing and house building to the economy is also explored, along with how the age and condition of a home can affect the health of those living in them.

While many of the facts may be reasonably familiar to you, others are more surprising, particularly the facts about the amount of UK land that is taken for housing.

Although having one of the highest population densities in Europe, the amount of land taken up by homes and gardens across the UK is a little over five percent.  That’s just 12,700km2 of land used for residential development out of the total 244,000km which makes up the UK.

We are also seeing encouraging signs that measures designed to protect our green and pleasant land are proving effective.  In 2016/17, 56% of all new homes in England were built on previously developed ‘brownfield’ land.

At a glance – the key facts about UK land usage

5.1% - the proportion of the UK’s land used for homes and gardens

56% - the proportion of new homes in England built on brownfield land in 2016/17

40% - the percentage of land in England where development is restricted

82.8% - the percentage of the UK population defined as ‘urban dwellers’ living in either urban or suburban areas

60,000 – number of planning approvals in 2017 for homes in both London and the South East, far exceeding approvals in other regions of the UK

Commenting on 40 facts: homes, housing and house building today, NHBC Chief Executive Steve Wood said: “The guide is a useful single source of key housing statistics which also provides the narrative behind the figures, giving readers a clear picture of the UK housing market.

“It shows an industry which is at the heart of the UK economy and at the centre of change as demographic forces challenge us to design and deliver the right types of homes for the future.”

For more information and to download the publication, please visit the NHBC Foundation website www.nhbcfoundation.org