Housing market 'dysfunctional'
Filed under: House Prices
Around one in six people in the UK (16.5%) is spending more than 40% of their income on housing costs such as rent, mortgage payments and other household bills, which charity Shelter said was evidence of the "deeply dysfunctional" housing market.
Mortgage Advice & Info
Mortgage Advice & Info
Only Denmark and Greece were found to have a bigger share of people paying high housing costs than the UK out of 29 countries analysed.
Countries such as Spain, Italy and Portugal fared better than the UK in the study. In Portugal, 4.2% of people were found to be spending more than 40% of their income on housing. Meanwhile, 11.2% of people in Spain and 7.5% of Italians faced the same strain.
Shelter said that a lack of affordable homes caused by a succession of governments and years of easy access to mortgages had helped to drive up house prices.
Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said: "These figures are the evidence that the UK housing market is deeply dysfunctional. With so many families spending huge amounts of their income on their rent or mortgage, people will be making daily trade-offs between food bills, filling the car tank with petrol, and paying their housing costs."
Housing Minister Grant Shapps said: "This Government is pulling out all the stops to build the affordable homes this country needs - which is why Government and private sector are jointly investing over £19 billion in an affordable housing programme set to exceed expectations and deliver 170,000 homes by 2015.
"We've also introduced schemes to help people on to the housing ladder - including the NewBuy scheme, which enables people to buy newly-built homes with a fraction of the deposit they would normally require, and the FirstBuy Scheme which offers a valuable alternative to the bank of mum and dad for first-time buyers struggling to get together a deposit.
"But one of the most important things we've done is tackle the record deficit we inherited, which has prevented the need for rapid increases in interest rates which would have placed additional pressure on hard-pressed families."
- House sellers slash asking prices
- Scope widens for first-time buyers
- Living by the seaside is healthier: is it worth the money?
- Compare mortgage rates