The Squeezed Issue

Oliver Parsons

Editor of Modus (RICS)

One of the inevitable consequences of the world’s spiralling rate of urbanisation is that people are arriving in cities faster than homes can be built for them. What happens next should be obvious to anyone with even the most basic grasp of the laws of supply and demand.

Modus May_SB_240418

Indeed, much has already been written about the housing affordability crisis that now grips cities such as London and New York. However, neither city is anywhere near the top of the league table for unaffordability. That dubious honour goes to Hong Kong, followed by Sydney and Vancouver. In this special report, we assess the state of affordability in key cities across the world. What steps can they take to improve affordability? What will happen to them if they don’t? And where is the issue being tackled most effectively?

Also this issue, could part of the solution to the overcrowding of our cities actually be found in putting more of us closer together? Urbanists have long argued in favour of “densification” but what does this actually entail? What does “good” densification look like, or does it even exist at all?

And finally, in major office markets around the world, occupiers are increasingly requiring less space, due both to the rise in remote working and millennials’ distaste for being cooped up in the same space week in, week out. What are the implications of this trend for the commercial property market.

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