A Diamond Jubilee Trip Down Memory Lane

A Diamond Jubilee Trip Down Memory Lane

With the countdown to the Diamond Jubilee well underway we thought it would be interesting to take trip down memory lane and look back at how home-related trends have moved on since 1952 when Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II first came to the throne.

House prices have seen the most striking change. In 1952 the average cost of a home was £1891 – a figure that most people will find astonishing given that today’s average house prices stands at £166022!

As these figures show there’s no denying the long term profitability of bricks and mortar and as a nation we are quite taken with closely monitoring movement in house prices - a trend that seems here to stay as house prices continue to make headlines in the national news and the front pages of our daily press.

Over the last six decades the average household has also changed. Back in 1952 an average of 4.2 people lived in each property – 2.2 children and a husband and wife. Many couples began married life in the marital home. Today of course the family unit is not so typically defined and with trends such as a big rise in the number of people living alone together with friends sharing and couples co-habiting each property is now home to an average of 2.3 people.

The inside of our homes are virtually unrecognisable too. Back at the time of the Coronation few households owned white goods for example only 33% had a washing machine and only 15% had a fridge freezer. That’s almost unthinkable in today’s world where fitted kitchens and the very latest design-led time-saving appliances are top of the wish list for most home-owners. In 2010 the UK white domestic goods market was worth around £3.5bn.

And only 14% of households had a television in 1952 whereas we are now surrounded by technology in the home. There are flat screen televisions in several rooms not to mention laptops computers iPads smart phones and almost 77% have internet access. In 1952 the development of computers was only just beginning – nowadays people use the internet for everything from shopping to searching for a new home.

Interestingly we are seeing some home and lifestyle trends from the 1950s making a comeback. Traditional hobbies such as knitting and baking are enjoying a renaissance; however it is fair to say that at the same time homeowners are enjoying all the benefits of modern house design and highly advanced interiors.

While it’s impossible to know how trends will evolve and how our properties and the way in which we live in our space will continue to change it’s fair to assume that we could all be living in a very different world by the time the nation celebrates Queen Elizabeth’s next Jubilee milestone.

Chris Endsor
Chief Executive
Miller Homes

Additional sources include:


Housing and planning stats 2010: Average household size www.communities.gov.uk



Key Note Market Report www.keynote.co.uk