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The Progressive Policy Think Tank

Squeezed Out: Choice and affordability in housing

People on low to middle incomes can often struggle to buy and keep their homes, are excluded from social housing and find private renting unsuitable. This report summarises research which looks at the choices made by individuals in housing, with affordability as the main factor. It compares the choices made by people in public sector jobs in Darlington and Reading.

A key theme of the Labour government's housing policy has been an ambition to increase choice across housing. People on low to middle incomes can often struggle to access and maintain home ownership, be excluded from social housing and often find private renting an unsuitable option.

This report assesses whether and why people within this income group are being squeezed out of their tenure and home of choice. It summarises research that looks at housing through the lens of individual choice, and focuses on affordability as the central constraint.

A set of policy suggestions describe and enhance a strategic approach whereby all key stakeholders - local, regional and central government, employers, house builders and landlords - would change policy and practice.