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Welcome to Thinkhouse


Thinkhouse.org.uk was officially launched in Spring 2018 and holds a library of the best and most innovative research pieces, policy publications and case studies that propose ways to increase the amount and quality of the UK's housing stock and the related economic, social and community benefits of doing this. The reports are grouped by year and by category.  Scroll down to read about how we curate the reports or see what has recently come out.  The links above provide access to all the publications on the site including those that the Editorial Panel have selected to be showcased. To help increase awareness of our resource, please cite us in work that uses sources found on Thinkhouse. To promote new research the Panel have created an early career researcher's competition, see below or click the link in 'About' for more information.







Thinkhouse.org.uk - how it works

The site is curated by an independent  Editorial Panel. The aim is to include all relevant publications, which are group by year and by category.  The Ed Panel assess each new report to select those that they feel merit being included in the 'must read' section on each yearly page. The Ed Panel aims to have about a dozen reports included in this section by the end of each year.  Those reports that have made way for more highly ranked ones are listed in the 'highly commended' section. The Ed Panel base their decision on, how likely they are to influence policy makers as well as the quality of the research/evidence, the coherence of the arguments, the report format/accessibility and how innovative and practical the pieces are.  

The overall objective is to provide easy access to a few key reports and provide a home for all relevant work.  Thereby helping to, inform policy makers who are engaged in understanding how we can build more and better homes and communities, improve knowledge transfer and provide evidence/ideas to drive decision making. 

To help speech writers and journalists the 'bite size facts' drop down menu includes snapshots of some interesting facts quoted reports published each year.  We have also started to trial the holding of links to international reports that provide interesting insights from around the world.  This is in beta release and can be accessed from the category menu above.  All comments and links to new reports, gratefully received.

The Ed Panel write a number of blogs about recently released reports and also a review of each research year.  See the 'Blogs' drop down menu.

Below you will find the most recent additions to the site.  Please alert us to any report that may have been missed or is due out soon.  You can use the search function to download a search enabled excel file of our entire database.

The site has been running since 2017 and was formally launched at the House of Lords in Spring 2018.  It has no ties to or funding from any interest or political group and reports are selected solely on merit. If you think we add value please help share what we are doing. Please cite us in work that uses sources found on Thinkhouse.

The Editorial Panel

The panel manage Thinkhouse

Our Ed. Panel have a mix of skills, backgrounds and experience in housing. They share a desire to see more and better homes built. The panel is chaired by Thinkhouse's founder Richard Hyde. Click on the drop down link under 'About' to view panel members. 

2019 Early Career Researcher's Prize (ECRP)

Sponsored by Altair and L&Q.

Our 2019 prize competition for early career housing researchers has been won by Anthony Breach, an analyst for Centre for Cities. This year the prize fund has been doubled to £500.

The prize gives early career housing researchers an opportunity to showcase their work to a wide and influential audience. It is open to UK and non-UK applicants. This is the second year that we have run this competition and last year’s winner, Anya Martin, was on the judging panel.  The 2019 winning entry, runner up are here.  

Contact us

The easiet way to get hold of us

info@thinkhouse.org.uk and on twitter @thinkhouseinfo.

Recently released reports

See the Year, Category or Search pages to view our library of other reports.

It was like a nightmare – the reality of sofa surfing in Britain today

Crisis, Ben Sanders and Sophie Boobis and Francesca Albanese, January 2020

Based on face-to-face interviews with 114 people with current or recent experience of sofa surfing across 12 locations, the report shines a light on the most common form of homelessness

What is affordable housing?

House of Commons Library. Wendy Wilson and Cassie Barton, January 2020

This briefing paper considers how affordable housing is defined in England and looks at key trends in the affordability of different tenure types. It examines the supply of affordable housing and the role of Housing Benefit in enabling households to access and retain affordable housing. 

Why Flats Fall Down

Built Environment for Scotland, Douglas Robertson, January 2020

This study highlights, drawing on data published by the Scottish House Condition Survey, that half of all Scottish housing is in ‘critical disrepair’ and almost half of this demands ‘urgent attention’

Local authority new build programmes and lifting the HRA borrowing caps What is the potential and what are the constraints? 

CIH National Federation of ALMOs ARCH, January 2020

A survey of 22 local authorities ranging from five London boroughs to large cities in the Midlands and North and several medium and small authorities. The replies throw considerable light both on local authorities’ new-build plans and on the opportunities and constraints they still face.

Assessing the impact of Housing First in Brighton and Westminster

SHUSU and St Mungo's, Katy Jones and Andrea Gibbons and Philip Brown, January 2020

Research that explores the impact of our Housing First services in Brighton and Hove, and Westminster. It strengthens the case that Housing First is an effective solution to rough sleeping, but works best if the wider environment is right.

Foundations for Community-Led Housing

Future for London, January 2020

Report on the potential for and practicalities of community-led projects to deliver more affordable homes and help rebuild trust and the community’s active role in development.

50 out-of-the-box Housing Solutions to Homelessness & Housing Exclusion

Housing Solutions Platform, January 2020

A compendium of some of the most innovative and daring examples of housing solutions which showcases 50 concrete examples of innovative solutions from across Europe to providing affordable housing. 

Capturing increases in land value

CaCHE, Tony Crook, January 2020

Debates about whether and how to tax or otherwise ‘capture’ increases in land values have dominated planning and housing policy debates for decades. The attempts to tax increases were largely unsuccessful and whilst planning obligations policies and practices have had the effect of capturing land values to finance for infrastructure and affordable housing they have been only partially successful. Debates about how to capture increases more successfully and especially to help finance more new affordable homes continue. The paper looks at the arguments for capturing increases in land values especially increases following planning permission, reviews the evidence of the outcome of policies and considers what more might be done including in the light of experience overseas and the differing experiences within the nations of the UK.

Unlocking brownfield land

Edaroth / Atkins, January 2020

Whilst written to promote Atkin's social housing business this paper does contain some interesting brownfield data and some interesting analysis.

Planning 2020 ‘One Year On’ 21st Century Slums?

TCPA, Nick Rainsford, January 2020

One year ago the final report of the Raynsford Review of Planning was published. This update report takes stock of how English planning has evolved since, and stresses the need for practical action and reform to fundamentally change the planning system. 

UK house prices and three decades of decline in the risk‑free real interest rate

Bank of England, David Miles and Victoria Monro, January 2020

Real house prices in the UK have almost quadrupled over the past 40 years, substantially outpacing real income growth. Meanwhile, rental yields have been trending downwards — particularly since the mid‑90s. This paper reconciles these observations by analysing the contributions of the drivers of house prices. It shows that the rise in house prices relative to incomes between 1985 and 2018 can be more than accounted for by the substantial decline in the real risk‑free interest rate observed over the period. This is slightly offset by net increases in home‑ownership costs from higher rates of tax. Changes in the risk‑free real rate are a crucial driver of changes in house prices — the model predicts that a 1% sustained increase in index‑linked gilt yields could ultimately (ie in the long run) result in a fall in real house prices of just under 20%.

News

We use our twitter account @thinkhouseinfo to post all our news.  Our latest tweets should also appear below...but sometimes they choose not to!