University of St Andrews

Report Finds Scotland needs 12,000 New Affordable Homes A Year

Monday 19 October 2015

The level of need for affordable housing in Scotland is double what is currently being delivered according to a new report co-authored by DGSD Senior Lecturer Dr Kim McKee.

The report says tackling Scotland’s housing crisis requires at least 12,000 affordable homes to be built each year for the next five years.

‘Affordable Housing Need in Scotland’ was commissioned by Shelter Scotland, the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) Scotland and the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA), and defines the scale, cost and reasons for what would be the biggest house building programme in Scotland since the 1970s.

The report is the result of the first in-depth investigation into Scotland’s total housing need in the last 10 years and puts the cost of the proposed housing programme at an average of at least £700 million each year over five years.

A team from the independent Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research at Sheffield Hallam (Powell), Sheffield University (Ferrari, Dunning) and University of St Andrews (McKee), who compiled the report, found that the need and demand for affordable housing far outstrips supply in Scotland.

In line with the research’s findings, Shelter Scotland, the SFHA and CIH Scotland want all political parties to adopt ambitious targets for new affordable housing in their manifestos for next year’s Holyrood election campaigns.

Report co-author Dr Kim McKee said:

“Our research highlights that Scotland needs at least 12,000 additional affordable homes for the next 5 years. This can only be achieved if the current affordable housing programme is scaled up, and affordable housing investment is prioritised in the forthcoming Comprehensive Spending Review.

“Good quality, affordable homes deliver a wide range of benefits not only for individuals, but also for local communities and the nation as a whole. Yet delivering upon these policy goals is not cost free. It requires significant political commitment and resourcing.

“More funding for affordable homes is the only way the backlog of housing need can be tackled effectively, and citizens can access safe, secure housing that is within their financial means.

An executive summary of the report can be downloaded here, and the full report here.

It was featured in the Scottish Housing News, Inside Housing, STV News Online, BBC News Online, The Independent, The Scotsman, The Herald, and the Evening Times as well as a number of local newspapers.