A SHARP rise in the number of Scots opting to live alone is expected to lead to Scotland’s households increasing by almost a quarter over the next 25 years, a newly published survey has said.
• Projected increases partly due to changes in Scotland’s household structure
• Number of households will be driven up by more than a fifth over next 25 years
• Cairngorms National Park area will see a 35 per cent rise in number of people living there
The number of households is set to increase from 2.36 million households in 2010 to 2.89 million in 2035, up 23 per cent, according to the National Records of Scotland.
Acting Registrar General for Scotland, Audrey Robertson said that the expected surge in households is mainly due to “more people are living alone and in smaller households”.
The average household size in Scotland is projected to fall from 2.17 people in 2010 to 1.95 people in 2035, the report published yesterday said.
One person households are predicted to dramatically increase, with the number of males living alone surging from 382,920 in 2010 to 600,040 in 2035 - a 57 per cent increase.
The number of females living in single households is set to soar from 479,650 to 687,950 during the same period - a rise of 43 per cent.
The Registrar General said that population changes in Scotland also helped to explain the predicted rise in households between now and 2035, but that the increase in singletons was the main reason.
She said: “Over the next 25 years, the number of households in Scotland is projected to increase by more than a fifth to 2.89 million in 2035.
“The projected increases are partly due to Scotland’s rising population, but are mainly a result of changes in household structure.
“More people are living alone and in smaller households. The average household size in Scotland is projected to fall from 2.17 people in 2010 to 1.95 people in 2035 and similar decreases are projected for all SDP areas and National Parks.”
The National Records of Scotland survey went onto say that increases are predicted in all of Scotland’s Strategic Development Plan (SDP) areas that cover the regions around Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow..
Glasgow and Clyde Valley SDP area household numbers are projected to increase by 17 per cent, from 799,500 to 938,520, according to the survey.
The number of households in Edinburgh and South East Scotland are set to increase by 32 per cent, from 553,180 to 732,680 households.
Aberdeen City and Shire area household numbers are predicted to increase by 35 per cent, from 205,960 to 278,940 households, the figure showed.
Dundee, Perth, Angus and North Fife numbers are projected to increase by 24 per cent, from 217,250 to 269,580 households.
Scotland will also see a sharp rise in the of households headed by someone aged over 65, with the number soaring by almost 60 per cent nationwide.
She said: “Between 2010 and 2035 there is a projected increase of almost 60 per cent in households headed by someone aged 65 or over.
“The number of households headed by someone aged 65 or over is projected to increase by almost half in Dundee, Perth, Angus and North Fife SDP area, and by three quarters in Aberdeen City and Shire SDP area.”
Meanwhile, a property expert warned that there would have to be an increase in the number of affordable homes to keep pace with the increases, particularly the sharp rise in single households.
David Marshall, business analyst for the Edinburgh Solicitors Property Centre (ESPC) said: “There are two main reasons for this trend in increasing single households, one of which is simply a lifestyle choice with more people deciding to live alone.
“We are also seeing people live longer and sometimes this means without a partner in their later years.
“Any rise in the number of households needs to be matched by they development of properties and the right sort of properties such as affordable and one room properties to meet the needs of the increasing numbers of single people that have been predicted.”