Migration fueling 'cavernous' housing deficit, says CPS

  • Revised net migration figures released last week by the Office for National Statistics show the UK had a record level of net migration in 2022 – 745,000
  • The new net migration figure is equivalent to 1.1% of the UK population
  • Combined with net migration of 467,000 in 2021, migration has increased the UK population by 1.2 million people in just two years – equivalent to a city the size of Birmingham
  • The housebuilding target for England is set at 300,000 homes per year, on the assumption of net migration of 170,500
  • Given England’s likely share of today’s net migration figure, the CPS has calculated we should instead be building 515,000 new homes each year – more than 73% higher than the official target
  • As a result of record net migration and sluggish housebuilding over the last decade, we have under-built by around 1.34 million homes

Briefing author Karl Williams, Deputy Research Director at the Centre for Policy Studies, said:

‘These figures highlight the historic rise in net migration and the failure of successive governments in tackling the housing crisis. Not only are we not building enough homes to meet demand from people already living in the UK, we are not even properly taking into account the needs of new arrivals.

‘The Government needs to get a grip on the immigration system to deliver the control it promised at the last election and do more to encourage housebuilding – greenfield and brownfield, urban and rural, north and south – otherwise a growing portion of the population will find themselves locked out of home ownership by our cavernous housing deficit.’



  • Karl Williams is Deputy Research Director at the Centre for Policy Studies.
  • ‘Net Migration and Housing – A CPS Briefing’ is available to download here.
  • Karl Williams is available for interview. For further information, please contact Emma Revell on 07931 698246 and [email protected] or Josh Coupland on 07912 485655 and [email protected].
  • The Centre for Policy Studies is one of the oldest and most influential think tanks in Westminster. With a focus on taxation, economic growth, business, welfare, education, housing and green growth, its goal is to develop policies that widen enterprise, ownership and opportunity.

Date Added: Monday 27th November 2023