Lacking consumer durables
Graphs on this page:
- Reflecting the rise in real incomes over time, the proportion of low-income households lacking selected consumer durables has fallen considerably since at least the earlier 1990s. So for example, 6% of households in the poorest fifth lack a microwave compared to 60% in 1992, 11% lack washing machines compared to 30% in 1992, and 5% lack a freezer compared to 35% in 1992.
- Nevertheless, these proportions are all still much higher than their equivalents for households on average incomes.
Definitions and data sources
The graph shows the proportion of households lacking one or more selected consumer durables, namely microwaves, VCRs, freezers, washing machines and colour televisions. For each item, four pieces of data are shown:
- The proportion of the poorest fifth lacking the item in 1992.
- The proportion of those on average incomes lacking the item in 1992.
- The proportion of the poorest fifth lacking the item in 2008/09.
- The proportion of those on average incomes lacking the item in 2008/09.
The data source for the graph is the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS). Income is household income, not equivalised (adjusted) to account for differences in household size and composition.
Overall adequacy of the indicator: medium. The choice of consumer durables in the analysis is largely driven by the data availability and is somewhat arbitrary.