Living in a tiny space
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Jennifer: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English from bbclearningenglish.com. My name is Jennifer and with me in the studio is Neil. Welcome, Neil!
Neil: Hi there Jen. In this programme, we take a look at a topic in the news and learn some new vocabulary and phrases from it.
Jennifer: In this programme, we’re talking about the growing number of people living in very tiny places. How big is your house, Neil? I bet you live in a castle!
Neil: I wish! No, I live in a small, two-bedroom flat, which is not big enough because there are four of us in it! How about you, Jen?
Jen: Well, my house is very small indeed, but I do feel grateful to have it, particularly as Britain is experiencing a housing crisis at the moment.
Neil: There’s a shortage of houses in Britain and this has meant that the price of houses has become very expensive.
Jennifer: The prices have become so expensive that people can’t afford to buy their own home. A popular way to describe buying your first home in English is ‘to get a foot on the property ladder’.
Neil: Even if you can afford to buy your own home, you might find that your money doesn’t buy very much. Research out this week has revealed that the UK has some of the smallest properties in Europe.
Jennifer: I’m glad you mentioned that, Neil, as it reminds me: I haven’t asked you the quiz question yet!
One European country has new homes which are, on average, almost 80% bigger than the homes in Britain. Is it:
a) Ireland b) The Netherlands c) Denmark
Neil: I don’t really know and I’m going to guess that it’s b) the Netherlands.
Jennifer: Well, we will find out if you are right at the end of the programme. So, we
know that there is a housing crisis in Britain, and we also know that many of the new houses which are on the market, or for sale, are very small. A typical one-bedroom home in Britain is just 46m².