Scottish House Condition Survey: Key Findings 2011

The Scottish House Condition Survey (SHCS) combines both an interview with occupants and a physical inspection of dwellings to build up a picture of Scotland’s occupied housing stock. This is the eighth ‘Key Findings’ report since the SHCS changed to a continuous format in 2003.


1 The first 3 years of the continuous survey ran from October to September. In 2007 the survey changed to calendar years.

2 NRS. Estimates of Households and Dwellings in Scotland, 2011


4 'Other flats' is made up of 4-in-a-block, tower/slab and flat from converted house.

5 Note this is different from the classification used by Scottish Gas where the dwelling has to be within 23m of a medium/low pressure gas pipe to be on the gas grid. SHCS houses are mapped by postcode, reducing the accuracy of dwelling location to 0.5 km.
Maps of existing gas grid infrastructure are kindly supplied by Scotia Gas Networks.


7 It is assumed that all post-1982 dwellings are insulated due to the higher levels of energy efficiency required by building regulations.

8 The SHCS provides an 'enhanced level 0' evidence base for NHER modelling.

9 Revised energy efficiency figures from the SHCS 2002 National Report are available to download at

10 Energy Efficiency and Estimated Emissions for the Scottish Housing Stock is available to download at

11 For more information on SAP 2001 and SAP 2005 see paragraphs 172-176.

12 See paragraph 177-181 for a description of the differences between SHCS and EPC measurements.


14 Greenhouse Gas Inventories for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland: 1990 - 2010, AEA

15 The Government's Standard Assessment Procedure for Energy Rating of Dwellings, BRE


17 Available to download at

18 Web only publication available at:

19 Technical note available at:

20 Fuel Poverty Evidence Review - Defining, Measuring and Analysing Fuel Poverty in Scotland

21 Hills Review Interim report (October 2011) -
Hills Review Final report (March 2012) -

22 paragraph 32.

23 The exact rise in overall fuel costs depends on the proportion of each of the fuels used by a household and the relevant charges for each supplier. Swings in prices will affect rural and urban areas differently.

24 The average fuel price figure included in Table 24 and Figure 10 is weighted by the proportion of households using each of those fuels for primary heating as recorded in the SHCS.

25 Source: Quarterly Energy Prices. Figures indexed to 100 in mid 2005. Tables available at:
2.1.3 Retail prices index: fuel components, monthly figures

26 Indexed values for fuel price and median income are relative to 100 in mid-2005

27 Figures reported here do not take account of cost of living increases.

28 For an assessment of SHCS income data in relation to the FRS/HBAI see
Raab, G 2004 'Comparison of Income Data between Surveys of Scottish Households'
available at

29 For more detail on the income data collection and imputation see Scottish Housing Condition Survey: Technical Report 2011 which accompanies this publication.

30 For more information see letter and notes at:

31 Estimates for 2002 and 2003/4 are published in the 2005/6 SHCS Key Findings Report at

32 See letter and notes available at:

33 See section 6.9 for further information on the Tolerable Standard.

34 See paragraph 185-188 for further information on the revised Tolerable Standard.

35 The definition of full central heating for SHQS purposes is: 'whole dwelling or rooms representing more than 50% of the floor area of the dwelling with the heating controlled from a single point'.

36 The SHQS failures count is on a per-dwelling basis. Where an SHQS failure is to a shared element, e.g. disrepair to a party wall, this failure will be counted twice. As a result the true number of criterion failures will be lower.

37 For the definition of SHQS 'serious disrepair', see SHQS Guidance Annex B

38 Assuming no design effect - see paragraphs 162-164.

39 Available to download at

40 More information is available at

41 More information is available at

42 The most recent SAP 2005 methodology paper is available at

43 Quarterly Energy Prices: tables available at:
2.1.3 Retail prices index: fuel components, monthly figures

44 For further information see the SHCS 2002 National Report Technical Annex 7 at

45 Further details on The Housing (Scotland)Act 2006 amendments are available at

46 More details can be found at:

47 Rates of fuel poverty are of course not directly observed. They are estimated from data on household income, housing characteristics and fuel prices assuming a given energy consumption regime. We use the terms 'observed' and 'predicted' here to differentiate between these estimates which are based on actual data and estimates where data about at least one set of factors have been simulated.

48 We experimented with an alternative method which took the residual from removing the income effect from the joint offsetting effect of income and stock. This gave a slightly lower figure which is to be expected given this method is more conservative in terms of the estimate of the role of housing characteristics and energy efficiency in particular, because where households potentially benefit from both income growth and energy efficiency improvements to move out of fuel poverty, these benefits are already accounted for by income.


Email: Ganka Mueller

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