Social challenges

Overcrowded housing affects many in the OECD, especially low-income households

18/01/2021 PNG

People need sufficient space in their homes for privacy and health, and to fulfil all the functions that a home should provide, such as space to study, spend time with family or entertain. In some OECD countries, more than 1 in 3 households live in overcrowded conditions; in others, the rate is less than 1 in 100. Lower income households are more likely to lack adequate living space than middle- and upper-income ones.

Overcrowded housing conditions have well-being and health implications. Preliminary evidence from France and the United Kingdom suggest that overcrowded living conditions and high-density living environments were associated with higher infection rates of COVID-19.

Learn more: Building for a Better Tomorrow: Policies to Make Housing more Affordable. (policy paper)

Visit the OECD Affordable Housing Database

Source: Housing overcrowding. (indicator)