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Affordable homes: residents’ views of quality



This research, jointly supported by the NHBC Foundation and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), investigates residents’ views of the quality of affordable new homes. It measures resident satisfaction after 3 to 4 years of occupation, evaluating a wide range of design aspects.

Through comparison with the findings published in the HCA Quality Counts reports (which investigate residents’ initial views of their homes) this research found enduring high satisfaction levels for key aspects of design, such as size, interior layout and security.

While the research draws attention to some opportunities for improvement in design, residents’ overall satisfaction with affordable homes remains very high in the early years of occupation.

Summary of content

Background and introduction

Positions this research within the context of the government’s Affordable Homes Programme and previous research on resident satisfaction published in the Homes and Communities Agency Quality Counts audits.

Method and interpretation

Sets out the survey approach and main considerations when interpreting the results/comparing findings with the Quality Counts reports.


The report has 9 sections covering resident satisfaction with the following design aspects after 3-4 years of occupancy:

1) Overall satisfaction with home
This includes an overall quantitative rating, supported by longer-term qualitative insights on satisfaction and comparison with previous home.

2) Overall view on what residents like about their homes and what they would change
Considers the things that residents like (or would change) about their individual homes or schemes.

3) Size of home, internal layout and storage

4) Indoor temperature, heating controls and ventilation
Reports satisfaction with these critical aspects of design, and explores residents’ ability to run their homes effectively and efficiently.

5) Windows
Reports resident satisfaction with the design and fit, and operation, of their windows.

6) Sound insulation
Considers satisfaction levels with sound insulation within homes, between adjoining homes and from outside.

7) Security

8) Outdoor space and parking
Considers satisfaction with balconies, back gardens and parking provision.

9) Satisfaction with the broader aspects of the scheme
Reports resident satisfaction with the appearance of the scheme, and how well it aligns with nearby buildings and meets the needs the social needs of residents.

The report also includes summary conclusions and references