From the TUC

A short post about the death of the British dream

29 Feb 2012, by in Economics

According to today’s Region and Country Profiles from the Office for National Statistics the proportion of UK dwellings that were owner-occupied fell between 2005 and 2010, from 69 per cent to 65 per cent. In fact, that proportion fell in every country of the UK and every region of England:

  • England, from 69 per cent to 65 per cent
  • Scotland, from 65 per cent to 64 per cent
  • Wales, from 74 per cent to 70 per cent
  • Northern Ireland, from 72 per cent to 69 per cent
    • The East of England, from 73 per cent to 69 per cent
    • The East Midlands, from 73 per cent to 69 per cent
    • London, from 57 per cent to 51 per cent
    • The North East of England, from 65 per cent to 62 per cent
    • The North West of England, from 70 per cent to 67 per cent
    • The South East of England, from 74 per cent to 70 per cent
    • The South West of England, from 73 per cent to 70 per cent
    • The West Midlands, from 71 per cent to 66 per cent
    • Yorkshire and the Humber, from 68 per cent to 64 per cent

You could argue that this country is too fixated on owner-occupation, that this bolsters social divisions and has led to this country neglecting other forms of savings and investment. I don’t think I agree with all of that, but I do agree that mortgage debt had a lot to do with our current economic problems.

And I think this is an important moment for the ‘squeezed middle’. If the American Dream was that any American could grow up to become a millionaire, the British Dream was that any Brit could grow up to own their own home, with a bit of garden if they wanted. The point when, throughout the country, that dream became less of a reality has got to be significant.

One Response to A short post about the death of the British dream

  1. Gareth
    Mar 1st 2012, 1:17 pm

    So does the TUC support planning reform to increase the supply of housing, lower the cost of housing, and provide construction jobs to boot?