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Housing: Standards

Volume 493: debated on Tuesday 2 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many (a) local authority and (b) registered social landlord properties in each region do not meet the Decent Homes standard because of overcrowding. (276274)

The Decent Homes Standard itself does not specifically cover overcrowding. ‘Crowding and space’ is one of the 29 hazards within the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS). To be decent, a home must be free of all Category 1 hazards under the HHSRS and also meet the other three criteria (adequate thermal comfort, repair and modern facilities and services). Under the HHSRS, crowding would constitute a Category 1 hazard if the property and its occupancy constituted an unacceptable risk of serious harm. A home is considered to be non decent through a HHSRS failure.

The 2006 English House Condition Survey, published in 2008, estimated through modelling that there might be fewer than 50,000 homes in this category for all tenures (private and social) across the country.