April 22, 2014

Housing and Intergenerational Fairness

This report is Policy Exchange’s contribution to retirement housing provider Hanover’sHanover@50 debate on the future of housing for older people.

Housing and Intergenerational Fairness calls on policymakers to reform the planning system to encourage the construction of new good quality homes that will not antagonise local people. Current rules make it almost impossible for developers to build houses with extra floors which has led to a situation where only 2% of UK housing stock consists of bungalows. In 2009, only 300 bungalows were built. The report says that building more bungalows will allow older people to downsize, freeing up family sized homes for younger families.

Report author Alex Morton, Head of Housing, Planning & Urban Policy at Policy Exchange, said “What is needed is a grand bargain between the generations not a tax on the elderly. More homes, tailored to the needs of older homeowners, will help free up family sized properties for the younger generation.

“It’s unsurprising that many of our talented men and women are making new lives for themselves outside the UK. We must reform the planning system to get Britain building more homes. This has to include more bungalows which will allow older people to downsize to a property that suits their specific needs.”


Alex Morton

Head of Housing, Planning & Urban Policy, 2010-2013

Owen Corrigan

Education Research Fellow, 2011-2013

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