The Case for Space is the RIBA’s first research paper for HomeWise. In it we assess the internal floor area of homes on a sample of sites by England’s eight largest volume housebuilders. We compare our findings to the Greater London Authority’s space standards to benchmark good practice. The paper also analyses past research into what adequate space in the home means, and how it impacts upon our lives.
Based on our sample, the average new home in England is only 92% of the recommended minimum size. The average three bedroom home from our sample was 88m² this is 8m² short of the recommended minimum floor area for a two storey, three bedroom home for five residents (96 sqm).
8m² is equivalent of a single bedroom and the furniture you’d expect to fit comfortably within it. It’s the space for a new arrival to the family, the space that means the kids have a room of their own, or a spare room for a guest to stay over. It’s the space that could take the kitchen out of the lounge and the sounds and smells that go with it.
The report is below in fall. [issuu width=550 height=500 titleBarEnabled=true backgroundColor=%23222222 documentId=110912110434-031ea9e7583a4b209beacebe73f117ae name=case_for_space_email username=ribacomms tag=case%20for%20space unit=px id=5befc8e0-f903-aa78-8906-fb8af7298273 v=2]
‘Lack of affordability’
The Home Builders Federation, however, said that if new homes were built bigger, some people would be priced out of the market.
“If you increase standards you’re going to increase costs,”
said head of planning Andrew Whitaker.
“That’s going to mean houses are going to become more expensive and we’re already suffering from a lack of affordability for young people and first-time buyers.”