The average size of a new build one-bedroom home in Britain is now no bigger than an underground train carriage, it was recently revealed.

Developers faced with sky-high land prices are cramming a lounge, kitchen, bedroom and bathroom into just 46 square metres.  That is the same size as a Jubilee Line tube carriage, according to the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

Outside of London there are no minimum standards and regulations for home builders on the size of a house or flat.  A room needs natural light from just one window measuring a tiny 45 cm x 45 cm, or the size of an average cushion.  The average British home is getting smaller, having shrunk from 85 square metres to 76 square metres and from 5.2 rooms to 4.8 rooms.

The report suggests that Britons now have the smallest homes in Western Europe.  Properties in Ireland are 15 per cent bigger, and those in Denmark are 80 per cent larger at 137 square metres.  The study found a third of home owners, 32 per cent, say they would like more space and 20 per cent would like more natural light.  In fact, for those living in a home that is two to ten years old, a lack of space is their main reason for wanting to move out.  Three quarters consider a lack of space a “key problem” and 69 per cent say they do not even have enough room for their possessions.

The RIBA report, The Case for Space says: “Space is an important factor when people are choosing a home, but many feel that newly built homes aren’t big enough.  Research suggests consumers are right to be worried.  A lack of space has been shown to impact on the basic lifestyle needs that many people take for granted, such as having enough space to store possessions or even to entertain friends”.

Kevin McCloud, presenter of Channel 4 show Grand Designs suggested that the creation of green belt land has increased land prices and in turn resulted in smaller homes.  He said “The Town and Country Planning Act effectively rationed the distribution of land for development by producing the green belt.  That meant land started to be traded as a commodity and increased in value. We have enormous quantities of green belt and one of the best preserved countrysides in Europe, but the price we pay for that ‘green and pleasant land’ is often small homes.  As the value of property has gone up, we have had to get used to buying smaller places.”

However, the preservation of our green belt is equally important to a very large proportion of the population.  As always with planning issues, you cannot please all the people, that is why there will always be  NIMBY’S and BANANA’s . Just for clarification:- Not In My Back Yard--- Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything.