Housing - Overcrowding

Overcrowding is when the accommodation space is too small for the number of people living in your household. The Official for National Statistics measures overcrowding by ‘occupancy rating’. They further explain “This relates the actual number of rooms to the number of rooms 'required' by the members of the household (based on a relationship between them and their ages). A household with a rating of -1 or less can be considered to be overcrowded.”1

A home maybe legally overcrowded if there are not enough rooms or space for the number of people who are living there2. The number of people per room as a general rule is:
1 room = 2 people
2 rooms = 3 people
3 rooms = 5 people
4 rooms = 7.5 people
5 or more rooms – 2 people per room.

This can also be determined by the floor area of a room 2.

  Buddhist 18%
  Christian 6%
  Hindu 22%
  Jewish 7%
  Muslim 32%
  Sikh 19%
  Other Religions 11%
  No Religion 9%
  National Average 7%

This chart shows that Muslims are most likely to live in overcrowding conditions. The chart below shows that the average number or people living in a Muslim household are 3.8 people per household. Muslims tend to have more dependent children compared to the general population. The 2001 statistics show that 39% of Muslims have 2 or more dependent children3.

1 Census, April 2001, Office for National Statistics: Focus on religion
2 http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/repairs_and_bad_conditions/overcrowding
3 Dobbs, J et al (2006). Focus on Ethnicity and Religion. Palgrave macmillan: Hampshire.

Over 50% London’s Bangladeshi and Black African Muslims were living in overcrowded households
32% of all Muslim households were overcrowded against a national average of 7%
National Average 7%
© Crown Copyright. Source data has been derived from ONS Census 2001, unless otherwise stated.