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To: The Minister for Housing and Planning
Set a Mandatory National Space Standard for UK Housing
We want the Nationally Described Space Standard of 2015 (i.e. a minimum size standard) to be made mandatory for all new homes built throughout the UK and to be integrated into Building Regulations.
Additionally, it should be a requirement for homes to be marketed – both for rental and for purchase – according to their internal floor area and not by the number of bedrooms they have. People need to know exactly how much space they are getting for their hard-earned money.
Why is this important?
We all know that the UK is in the midst of a housing crisis and that there is an acute need for more homes. However, we don’t think this problem will be solved by allowing more small and poorly-designed homes to be built.
The UK currently builds the smallest homes in western Europe, which means that many of them are not fit for purpose when fully occupied. A lack of space and the poor design of a home can impact health, well-being, family relationships and even a child’s educational achievement. Adequate space (including storage space) is essential for a home to be comfortable and sustainable in the long term.
In 2015 the UK Government introduced the Nationally Described Space Standard. This specified, amongst other things, a minimum floor area for each size of household. It meant that a flat for one person would be of a minimum of 37m2 and a two-storey, 3-bedroomed house for 4 people a minimum of 84m2. However, the Space Standard was not made mandatory and the Government has since proposed relaxing this minimum standard.
Let’s set a mandatory space standard and put an end to building rubbish houses in the UK!