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The 'lack Of Supply' Myth


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illegal immigrants dont come up on any census or government data ie they offically dont exist.

That's not true - although the response rate for the 1991 Census was 98%, 94% for the 2001 Census and it will be less again for 2011 - ONS adjust the population counts from their collected census data using a follow-up survey of 1% of the popoulation. So the population counts they publish at various levels of geography are intended to represent ALL persons in that area - including illegal immigrants - not just those who participated in the census.

Although whther they're accurate is another matter :)

Some additional insight into how the ONS can pretend it is able to identify illegal immigrants with a survey would, doubtlessly, be a delight to behold

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Some additional insight into how the ONS can pretend it is able to identify illegal immigrants with a survey would, doubtlessly, be a delight to behold

They are bound by law not to share personal data with any other body for 100 years - the census act. They only share statistical data with other bodies until then. So illegal immigrants should fear no reprucussion about completing a census form.

Theoretically, it should be quite difficult not to participate in the census - if you haven't sent a form back in the post or online they may employ field staff to visit your house around 6 times to encourage you to complete it.

They will put more investment into this follow-up in areas of deprivation, high proportion of ehnic minorities - such areas will comtain more illegal immigarnts.

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They are bound by law not to share personal data with any other body for 100 years - the census act. They only share statistical data with other bodies until then. So illegal immigrants should fear no reprucussion about completing a census form.

Theoretically, it should be quite difficult not to participate in the census - if you haven't sent a form back in the post or online they may employ field staff to visit your house around 6 times to encourage you to complete it.

They will put more investment into this follow-up in areas of deprivation, high proportion of ehnic minorities - such areas will comtain more illegal immigarnts.

I suspect that any illegal would be just as dubious about supposed prohibitions on data-sharing as many legals would be

And, short of the ONS forcing its way into a property and conducting a search, how can a completed form be treated as primary evidence of the number of people resident in a property; especially if the residents are keen to avoid being included?

Come to think of it, the best way of tightening up the accuracy of the census would be to actually share data and try and synchronise census returns with National Insurance records.

Any guesses on how many millions out the two databases would be?

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I suspect that any illegal would be just as dubious about supposed prohibitions on data-sharing as many legals would be

And, short of the ONS forcing its way into a property and conducting a search, how can a completed form be treated as primary evidence of the number of people resident in a property; especially if the residents are keen to avoid being included?

Come to think of it, the best way of tightening up the accuracy of the census would be to actually share data and try and synchronise census returns with National Insurance records.

Any guesses on how many millions out the two databases would be?

You raise good points, I agree - the census is far from perfect in providing accurate data but it's the best tool they have for estimating the uk population at various levels of geography to inform their polices. Every country from America to the Sudan has a Census and those that do not (e.g. norway) have frequent surveys that estimate their population in a similar manner, so the data collected is clearly useful .

Edited by Unsafe As Houses
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You raise good points, I agree - the census is far from perfect in providing accurate data but it's the best tool they have for estimating the uk population at various levels of geography to inform their polices. Every country from America to the Sudan has a Census and those that do not (e.g. norway) have frequent surveys that estimate their population in a similar manner, so the data collected is clearly useful .

I'm not arguing against a census but, and I've got no particular axe to grind in this department, I suspect the next one is going to shine little light on the true number of illegals/ marginally-legals in the UK.

Edited by Charlton Peston
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Why is that?

Combination of factors: people are becoming less prone to respond to surveys in general, possibly from all the marketing cold calling etc. that they have to wade through; people are harder to reach (e.g. more people live alone and are therefore harder to get a questionnaire to and harder to contact to get back a completed one; the population is more diverse (e.g. greater range of languages); and less money is spent on the census (in 1991 the number of people employed to deliver and collect questionnaires was about 120,000-ish, for 2011 its about 35,000-ish).

Edited by Unsafe As Houses
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I'm not arguing against a census but, and I've got no particular axe to grind in this department, I suspect the next one is going to shine little light on the true number of illegals/ marginally-legals in the UK.

Agreed. I think they ask questions on how recently migrants have arrived into the country, but fall short of: Are you an illegal immigrant? :)

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Agreed. I think they ask questions on how recently migrants have arrived into the country, but fall short of: Are you an illegal immigrant? :)

In my case 'Here and there, occasionally'

and, illegals aside, if I listened to my Inner Injin I'd probably refer to the Census as the National Stocktake or something along those lines...

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Edited by Charlton Peston
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they seem to be heavily marketing new flats, houses and even plots in and around the south of england in southafrica at the moment as investment oppertunities. several freinds have got in touch to ask me if portsmouth southampton and brighton are good areas..

being hyped as the best time to buy as the pound is bound to come back up and english property has survived the crash..

hopefully i convinced them enough now is not the time.

suspect they would (on buyin) be encouraged to keep the place empty so they can sell in pristine when the pound is strong again... do hope not to many fall for this melarky

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If there was a lack of supply or a shortage of housing in the UK then by that logic there'd be alot of families on the street as there would be no where to live either rent or buy. A property in my area has been available to let for over a month now and another for sale across the road for over a year now.

But lots of people have bought too small a property or are living at home because rents are too high. Just because we don't have anyone out on the street doesn't mean we have adequate supply. Supply is supply, and if we have lots of single old ladies rattling around in big houses, quite happy and not about to die for another 30 years, it doesn't add to supply. If we have lots of people living in small, cramped who'd like to move up, that'll add to demand.

If we have lots of families cramped into small houses, and some old people rattling around in big houses. Granted we don't have a shortage, shortage, but we don't have an abundant oversupply either.

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You're not taking account of the fact that household size has reduced from 2001 to 2007 - more people live in single-person households - this is one reason why supply (i.e. new homes) is not keeping up with demand (population growth).

Do you have any evidence for this? Because the household size link I posted states that after a period of falling household size, by 2001 this had stabilized. In fact I would argue that household size will have actually increased since then due mainly to housing costs and patterns of immigration.

Edit: Actually, you can add to this the direct/indirect effects of the financial crisis:

Lack of mortgage availability to FTBs

Increasing tuition fees

Increasing number of households taking lodgers

Dropping divorce rates

I'd be very surprised if the household size hasn't risen when the census data is released.

Edited by NEO72
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