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Housing concerns growing among the public – ONS

Increasing numbers of people are citing housing as their main concern, official data suggests.

The latest public opinions and social trends survey by the Office for National Statistics shows the proportion of people who voiced housing concerns has risen from 53% in late October and early November 2022, to 64% today.

That has made it the fourth largest concern among the public behind the cost of living crisis, the NHS and the economy.


A third of respondents said it’s difficult to afford the rent or mortgage and two in five said hteir housing costs have increased over the past six months.

Commenting on the data, Sarah Coles, head of personal finance, Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “Housing is more of a pressing concern for people than crime, climate change and immigration… and it’s hardly surprising.

“Housing costs are putting anyone paying a mortgage under increasing pressure. More than 1.4m people remortgaged from a fixed rate mortgage last year – more than half were coming off rates under 2%, and were facing rates closer to 5%. 

“Right now, Moneyfacts figures show the average two-year fixed-rate mortgage costs 5.94% - alarmingly close to 6%. It’s no wonder figures from the HL Savings & Resilience Barometer show that one in four people with a mortgage are at risk of falling into arrears by the end of the year, and that ONS figures show a third of people say it’s difficult to afford the rent or mortgage.”

“Over time, we can hope that falling interest rates take some of the pain out of the mortgage market. However, for renters it’s hard to see how life will get better while the market gets increasingly unbalanced with every passing month.”


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