The latest research from new build snagging company, HouseScan, has found that not only is the number of new build homes being delivered to market with disabled access expected to fall throughout the next decade, but the ones that are being delivered are also unfit for purpose as housebuilders cut corners to maximise profits.
There are approximately 14.1m people living with a disability across the UK, around 21% of the total population. It’s thought that around 7.9m of these are working adults who face a tougher financial task when it comes to saving for a property, as living with a disability comes at an additional cost of £583 on average each month compared to those living without.
In addition to the tougher financial task, new build homebuyers with a disability also face a lower level of housing stock to choose from.
Not only has Covid caused new build housing delivery to fall by 45% per year, but research shows that over the next decade (2020-2030), the proportion of those new build homes built to accessible standards is predicted to fall from 34.4% to 31.5%.
This decline directly relates to accessible and adaptable homes (M4 Category 2) or wheelchair user dwellings (M4 Category 3). These homes provide additional features to the average new build including wider doors, stronger bathroom walls that can facilitate a grab-rail and greater circulation space for those in a wheelchair.
The latest figures show that 180,140 new build homes were completed across the UK over the last year. This reduced level of disabled accessible homes means that just 56,744 would have been fit for disabled new build homebuyers, over 5,000 less than the level delivered prior to 2020.