Industry News Calum Davies 19/10/2020

NRLA calls for Welsh Housing Survey

The NRLA Wales has today launched its campaign for political parties to commit to expanding the evidence base for housing by introducing a Welsh Housing Survey (WHS).

The call comes as the Senedd is in the process of passing its fourth Bill affecting the private rented sector in six years without any comprehensive, government-commissioned data set for housing to support good policy making.

The Association argues that the long-running English Housing Survey (EHS), in place since 1967, is an aspirational model due to the volume of data it collects. Adopting a similar model for Wales would allow for greater comparability and accountability between the nations.

The NRLA call for a survey has been backed by other prominent housing bodies: the Chartered Institute for Housing, the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, the Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors, Tai Pawb, and ARLA-Propertymark.

The campaign has also been backed by Homes for All Cymru, an alliance of housing and housing related organisations in Wales that includes Shelter and Crisis among their members.

A Welsh Housing Survey would collect a wealth of information such as data on the proportion of private rented sector tenancies ended by the tenant, the levels of satisfaction among social renters, and the percentage of owner-occupied homes that are under-occupied.

Wales currently builds data on housing through the National Survey for Wales and the Housing Conditions Evidence Programme. The NRLA says this falls far short of what a Welsh Housing Survey would deliver.

With Covid-19 forcing prioritisation of public spending, NRLA Wales is keen to reassure policymakers that the survey will provide value-for-money, with the benefits of evidence backed policy making and evaluation far outweighing the potential modest cost of the survey.

Commenting, NRLA Chief Executive, Ben Beadle, said:

“We’re very pleased to launch our campaign for a Welsh Housing Survey - calling for better data collection so those operating in government and the housing sector are more informed when making policy.

“The fact we have secured the support of a wide range of organisations across Wales demonstrates the consensus that housing professionals and households alike recognise the need for government-commissioned, comprehensive data for housing.

“A Welsh Housing Survey would prove good value-for-money throughout and post-pandemic and will pay dividends in the information it can provide policymakers.

“We hope that these facts will prove to political parties the merits of our proposal and they will adopt it in their manifestos as they aim to form the next Welsh Government next spring.”

  • The joint statement can be read online here, the full list of signatories to the statement include: The Chartered Institute for Housing;  The Tenancy Deposit Scheme; The Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors; Tai Pawb; ARLA-Propertymark and Homes for All Cymru.
Calum Davies

Calum Davies Welsh Policy & Public Affairs Officer

Calum Davies is the NRLA’s Welsh Policy & Public Affairs Officer. After working in communications and research for a political party in the Welsh Parliament, he moved to the NRLA to promote the work of the Association to members, politicians, and stakeholders in Wales. He ensures they are aware of landlord interests when they legislate and regulate in the PRS, helps run the Cardiff Landlord Forum, and develops policy and organises events for NRLA Wales.

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