Housing Crisis? What Housing Crisis?

From the quosac2 blog Why do we need more houses in the UK? Why are house prices sky-high, and unaffordable by essential workers? Why do kids, old enough to move out, stay at home and spend their quite reasonable earnings on booze and cars? Why are more elderly people living on their own, necessitating carers to drive round in cars? Why are cars so necessary?
I'm sure if you add up all the bedrooms in the country, you'd find a surplus.
Surely, if people opted for sharing their homes, or move into shared homes, we could instantly get more accommodation. Young people can share, old people can share, mixed ages can share. Single households generate more waste per head. Single households need more heating energy per head. It's hard work maintaining a house on your own, especially if you need to work, or if you're elderly.
Government specs for new developments aim to cram them in - great for squeezing them onto brownfield sites, but pathetic for gardens, which are breathing spaces, places for drying clothes, composting waste, growing food, appreciating nature.
Shared housing shares burdens and costs, provides company, provides security, provides care when you're down. People in shared housing find they can afford to work part-time; they can downsize on their personal material comforts, upsize on their social and shared comforts.
Divorce is another issue - I blame lack of conversation in this busy-busy-busy lifestyle. The more you have, the more you have to look after - so cut it out. Axe telly-time, talk. And don't dream of winning the lottery - it won't happen, and any charity will benefit more by direct donation. If you've got a dream, work towards it - dreaming won't help!
In a large group, you can have babysitters, granny-sitters, dog-minders, specialists, and hearty entertainment - jam-sessions if you're musically minded! And how many cars do you need? Not many.

1 comment:

Coventry Blogger said...

Fair comment - I shared a house for a couple of years recently and really enjoyed it. More than the one-person flat I've had for the last year. The shared house had a garden and company for as much or little time as I wanted - we carried on parallel lives rather than sharing cooking etc. The only issues were to do with fridges and freezers getting too full, not that big a problem, let's face it!
There are very high expectations in this country now regarding personal inhabited space, and house-sharing is very much deemed to be for young people, and poor people. Consequently the house-builders don't build anything 'risky', so we don't get the equivalent of Isocon. The nearest I know of is BedZed, where there are studio flats with their own tiny roof gardens on top of houses, and a social and working space in the same complex.
Can't imagine anyone building anything just yet where there are shared laundry facilties - am I the only person who enjoys going to the laundrette?! So, no, I don't really think we have housing crisis, just politicians jumping on a media bandwaggon...