That isn’t a typo! Of the 205,000 households in Manchester, 67,100 of these properties have not only one but two spare bedrooms. It is this topic I want to talk about this month, because this could be the cure for Manchester’s housing crisis. The fundamental problem with the housing market in Manchester is that historically the supply of homes has not kept pace with demand, putting upward pressure on property values, and in turn rents. This has ensured that home ownership has become an unattainable ambition for many of the twenty somethings in Manchester.
Call me simple, but it seems obvious that either demand needs to drop or supply needs to rise if we’re to stop this trend getting even worse for generations to come. I admire Downing Street’s plans to build 200,000 starter homes which will be offered to first time buyers under 40 years old with a minimum 20% discount on market values. However, this does not increase the stock of new ‘starter’ homes - it simply replaces one affordable scheme with another. In Manchester, 118,300 households have at least one spare bedroom and of these, 67,100 have two or more spare bedrooms. This compares with 33,700 households in Manchester that are overcrowded (i.e. there are more people than bedrooms in the property).
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