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FACTS AND FIGURES

1 Only England and Wales have no minimum space standards for housing. All other European countries do. Even Scotland does! Comparative Study of the Control and Promotion of Quality in Housing in Europe, ODPM
2 Britain (including Scotland) have the smallest average room size and also we have the smallest newly-built dwellings in Europe:

Facts & Figures

3 British homes are becoming more condensed, with more rooms in the same space. Reduction in available living space is due to the inclusion of extra rooms, especially en-suite bathrooms and utility rooms.
BCIS Five Year Review of UK Housing (RICS, 2005).
4 Old houses that are still lived in today have survived because they are roomy enough to adapt to lifestyles. Consumer Choice in Housing, the beginnings of a home buyer revolt: Ken Barlett et al, JRF 2002.
5 When faced with trade-offs consumers show that they strongly prefer additional bedrooms or larger rooms sizes to additional bathrooms. Preferences, quality and choice in new-build housing: Leishman, C et al for JRF 2004.
6 A study of 114 children, all aged four, in daycare and Head Start classes in New York found that pre-schoolers who lived in crowded homes and went to crowded daycare centres suffered more severe behavioural and cognitive development problems than children in just one of these crowded settings. Maxwell, L. (1995) Crowded homes and daycare centres located on http://www.news.cornell.edu/science.
7 A large-scale household survey into areas of West Belfast revealed an association between crowding and psychological distress among children. Blackman, T., Evason, E. and Melaugh, M. (1989) Housing and health: A case study of two areas in west Belfast, Journal of Social Policy, 18, 1-26.
8 People need enough space to be able to come together, and – crucially - to be apart and have some privacy. In accommodation designed for more than one or two people, this implies that there are either two separate living areas (one may be a dining room), or the bedrooms are large enough to allow the occupant(s) to use them for their private recreational activities or study/work as well as places for sleeping, dressing etc.
Housing Space Standards, Drury et al for Greater London Authority, 2006.
 
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