Sustainable Cities Collective has re-launched as Smart Cities Dive! Click here to learn more!

To Own Or To Rent: Housing Is A Spatial Issue

Another data nugget from the Census which was released last week reveals patterns of residence by tenure. With much talk on needing to boost the construction sector and a renewed focus on housing, our analysis clearly shows that tenure patterns have a spatial element to them.

Oxford and Cambridge have the lowest rates of home ownership (47 per cent of households) and high rates of private rental (28 and 27 per cent, respectively). Hull, London and Liverpool make up the next lowest rates of home ownership (50, 51 and 54 per cent, respectively) with Hull showing the highest rate of social tenancy (28 per cent). Hastings has the highest proportion of people privately renting (29 per cent), while Warrington, Wakefield and Wigan have the lowest (11, 11 and 12 per cent, respectively).

12-12-13 Rented v Ownership (RS)
Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2012

Clearly, the factors influencing the housing tenure patterns in different cities are varied. For example, cities with high levels of deprivation where individuals and households have limited access to decent jobs and income are likely to have higher shares of social housing. 

In other cities high house prices mean people can't afford to buy and have to rent. Whilst in other cities with high levels of renting this will be down the size of the student population.

Regardless, one thing is for sure – different cities need to identify and respond to their different issues.

Follow Joe on Twitter: @joesarling