Rise of the Yes-Buts
Forty Shillings – a specialist property communications agency commissioned us to explore attitudes towards development in London
We are in the midst of a housing crisis, with home ownership rates declining and a whole generation of people unable to get anywhere near the first rung of the ladder.
But we also have a planning system where new housing development is routinely and vocally opposed by local communities.
It’s the old chestnut: we want more housing, just not in our backyard.
But is this still true? We tried to find out.
Representative online sample of 1,150 people living in London
Statistical analysis (regression) on the results, exploring which factors matter most and how they influence each other.
We found that Londoners were very pessimistic about the housing situation and thus more likely to say yes to development. Almost 70% said they didn’t believe they would own a home in five years’ time. Over 60% supported new development in their neighbourhood, across the social and political spectrum.
There was still concern about protecting green space and the quality and affordability of new developments – with respondents rating these factors as priorities.
However, we found that supporters of more housing development were potentially more motivated to get involved in the process than opponents (but haven’t yet been engaged by the property industry).
And we found that a significant majority accepted the argument that greater supply would bring down prices. This was the strongest driver of support for housing development.
Presenting the findings
We presented these findings jointly with Forty Shillings to an exclusive event of property industry executives.