Housing quality - Public Health Dorset

Housing quality

Housing is a key determinant of people’s health and wellbeing. Living in a suitable home also enables people to access education or employment, and to contribute to society. Living in cold, damp overcrowded or otherwise unsuitable homes increases the risk of physical and mental health (e.g. for disabled or older people) or through unstable living circumstances/homelessness.

People unable to keep their home warm enough are more likely to use health and social care services. Poor housing is linked to an increased risk in cardiovascular and respiratory disease (in both children and older people) and can lead to falls and injuries, requiring specialist housing or residential care. Public Health has been working with other partners in local authorities to help improve the housing stock and enable people to live in their own home for longer.

Overcrowded housing is associated with increased risks of respiratory and infectious disease, and also poor mental health and child development / educational attainment. Locally, Bournemouth has a higher rate of overcrowded housing compared to the England average.

Key statistics

Indicators of housing quality for our region have been drawn from three datasets: Wider determinants of healthPublic Health profilesPublic Health Outcomes Framework (PHE).

* indicates a statistically significant difference from the respective English Average.

Housing quality key statistics
Indicator BCP Dorset South West England
Households experiencing Fuel Poverty (%) 8.1 8.8 9.4 10.3
Overcrowded households (%) 4.0* 2.2* 2.9* 4.8
Households in temporary accommodation (Rate per 1,000)  1.9* 1.3* 1.1* 3.8
Affordability of home ownership (Ratio of median house price to median gross residence-based earnings)   9.7 9.7 8.7 7.8
Excess winter deaths index, all ages (ratio) 4.5* 13.2 15.5 17.4

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