Younger people and women are the most likely to suffer from the problem of finding affordable housing 

New research (1) reveals that 19% of people are spending more than half of their monthly net household income on housing costs such as mortgage or rent payments, utility bills and council tax, and 4% spend over 75%.  The average is 34%.

A possible reflection of the gender pay gap, the findings, which are from Engen Group, the UK based innovation and property business which focusses on addressing environmental challenges such as affordable and sustainable housing, reveals the corresponding figures for women are 26% and 6% respectively, and 13% and 3% for men.

Affordable housing has been defined(2) as spending 35% or less of your monthly income on housing costs.  Engen’s research found 39% of people spend more than this, but for those aged 18 – 34, the corresponding figure is 47%.

Percentage of monthly net household income spent on housing costs Percentage of people who say they spend this much each month on their housing costs
Under 10% 7%
Between 10% and 20% 26%
Between 20.1% and 30% 21%
Between 30.1% and 35% 8%
Between 35.1% and 40% 8%
Between 40.1% and 50% 12%
Between 50.1% and 75% 15%
Between 75.1% and 100% 4%


Engen’s research suggests the problem of affordable housing in the UK is becoming worse as 38% of people said they have spent more of their income on housing costs over the past 12 months, compared to 8% who say they have spent less.  Similarly, for the next 12 months, 38% anticipate they will spend more whereas 8% expect expenditure to fall.

Graeme Boiardini, CEO of Engen Group said: “Our findings are very alarming but given the housing shortage in the UK not entirely surprising.  Thankfully building more affordable housing is at the top of the political agenda, so hopefully over the next few years we will see significant inroads being made into tackling this problem.”

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