Nimbyism falling as public support more housebuilding, according to poll

 Polling by ComRes for the Centre for Policy Studies has suggested that Britain has switched from being anti-housebuilding to broadly supporting it.

The survey of 2,036 adults reported that, by a margin of 48% to 33%, they would support more homes being built in their area.

This pattern holds true across all ages, social classes and political persuasions, and in every region except the South-East.

Robert Colvile from the Centre of Policy Studies said: ”What’s interesting about this poll is that a significant majority, 48% of respondents, support more homes being built in their local area. This is a huge shift from attitudes even a few years ago where nimbyism was the clear winner.

‘It’s clear from this polling that if this Government is to win over ordinary working people, fixing the housing crisis should be top of ministers’ to-do list.’

Their research also revealed that of a margin of 63% to 19%, respondents agree that house prices near them have become too high. The proportion agreeing ranges from 79% in London to 45% in the North East.

‘Unsurprisingly, this polling backs up the assumption that people want houses they can afford – and think that house price inflation has gone way too far,’ added Mr Colville.

The majority of those surveyed said they would support ‘limited’ housebuilding in the countryside, with this proportion of people remaining around the same since 2010.

Two of the most prominent proposals for development, weakening green belt protections around train stations and other existing infrastructure, or permitting building on the least attractive land within it, are both unpopular with the respondents according to the survey.

The report says there is a ‘clear message’ that if local communities received more of the benefits from housing being built, residents would be more likely to support house-building, especially if homes were of a higher quality.


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