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Survey: Why the UK needs more space

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Whether it’s due to a lack of space for hosting guests or because you’re looking to expand your own family, the need for wanting more space in our homes varies greatly. We all have different needs and wants when it comes to a property, but what does the UK favour most?

We’ve conducted a survey of 2,000 Brits to find out why they need more space in their homes, how much they would be willing to spend on increasing their space and what factors would persuade them to move to a bigger property. 

In addition, we’ve also looked into how happy consumers are with the size of their current space, breaking the results up by city to see which area’s want to move the most.

The top 10 reasons Brits need more space in their homes

Our survey results found that limited storage was the main reason why Brits need more room in their homes. With 20% of UK consumers selecting this as their number one reason, it’s evident to see that clutter could be a problem. 

Lack of garden space ranked second in the survey with more than 16% choosing it. For these past few years in particular, having a garden area can be seen as somewhat of a luxury, with many residents not having the option to step outside for fresh air. As the survey results show, it’s clear that Brits value gardens highly as it would solve many of their problems with living space. 

A seemingly common theme for wanting more space comes in the form of hosting guests. Not having a ‘spare room for guests’ and ‘hosting family and friends’ ranked third and fourth in the survey. A clear desire for many homeowners who are wanting to expand their space. 

How happy are Brits with the size of their home?

 

Which cities are the least happy with the size of their property?

Rank City % of respondents who voted ‘very unhappy’ or ‘unhappy’ 
1 Liverpool 23%
2 Belfast 22%
3 London 22%
4 Birmingham 21%
5 Manchester 20%
6 Sheffield 18%
7 Plymouth 17%
8 Nottingham 17%
9 Bristol 17%
10 Newcastle 15%
11 Edinburgh 13%
12 Leeds 12%
13 Southampton 11%
14 Cardiff 11%
15 Glasgow 10%

Sometimes, how happy you are with the size of your property can be down to the city you live in. Analysing the survey results, we looked at a breakdown between major UK cities to find out which are the least happy with the current size of their property.

23% of Liverpool residents said they were either ‘very unhappy’ or ‘unhappy’ about their property size. London ranks third within the study with Manchester being fifth. 

Therefore it could be said that there is a correlation between happiness with property size and living in bigger, more dense cities. For example, 30% of those living in Norwich said they were ‘very happy’ with their property size, the most of all UK cities with Norwich being far more spaced out from home to home compared to major cities.

The top features that would convince Brits to move home

Sometimes even the smallest of property features can persuade residents to move home. We asked the British public what the most stand-out feature for them would be if they could be convinced to move.

At more than 19%, an ensuite bathroom was voted the most popular reason for being persuaded to move home, with a spare bedroom for guests ranking second at 17%. 

With lockdowns in the UK showing how fortunate residents are for having a garden space, there’s little surprise to see conservatories and gardens rank highly in the survey results. Another option that ranked highly with little surprise is the need for a home office. During the pandemic, more than 25% of Brits worked from home and with nearly 10% of Brits saying an office would convince them to move, it shows how working from home has made a huge impact on what’s important for homeowners.

Would Brits move to a bigger property if they had the chance?

Option % of respondents 
Yes, I would move to a bigger home 50%
No, I would not move to a bigger home 29%
No, I would downsize 10%

A staggering 50% of Brits surveyed said they would move to a bigger home if given the chance. In comparison to this, just below 30% said they would not.

Perhaps more interesting is that 10% of consumers would downsize if given the chance. Whether it’s location or the need to no longer have space for family, the results show not everyone wants a bigger home.

How much would Brits spend on increasing the size of their home?

  • In total, Brits would be willing to spend, on average, £10,000 to increase the space in their home
  • Sheffield ranks as the city where residents want to spend the most on improving the space in their home – £20,630 on average
  • 16-24 year-olds are willing to spend the most to increase the space in their home – £23,800 on average
  • Residents living in Newcastle want to increase the size of their property to add value the most (15%)
  • 33% of Brits wouldn’t be willing to increase the space in their home

Data & sources

Data collected June 2021. Full survey results available on request.

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