The new homeownership: the impact of labour market developments on attitudes toward owning your own home
During the postwar period as a whole homeownership in Britain has been generally considered to be a desirable form of tenure. For many observers the present -- since 1989, down turn in the market -- characterised by high levels of arrears, stagnant or fafling prices, negative equity, and so on -- is a temporary blip from which sooner or later the enthusiasm for owning will recover. In the first part of this paper we analyse the British Social Attitudes Surveys for 1989 and 1991 in order to identify which groups in the population have most reduced their support for owning. The main conclusions are that the largest reduction has been amongst those groups who were already most marginal to the tenure and can be related to experiences in and expectations of the future of the economy as well as to specific, rather than general, characteristics of the tenure. In the second part of the paper we suggest that the basis of these attitudinal changes is to be found in the changing nature of work in Britain with there being a contradiction between the long-term commitment of ownership as it is currently organised and the insecurities of the labour market
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