The Housing Experiences of Polish Migrants in the UK

Authors: Alexandra Buckland-Stubbs*, University of Hertfordshire, Dr Richard Lloyd Vaughan Southern, University of Hertfordshire, Dr Darren Stewart Crook, University of Hertfordshire
Topics: Migration, Immigration/Transnationalism, Qualitative Research
Keywords: Migrant Experiences, Polish Migration, Housing
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/4/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM
Room: Council Room, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The research to be presented seeks to shed new light on the housing experiences of recent Polish migrants in the UK. A selection of in-depth interviews and analysis of a range of housing advertisements are examined to gain greater insight into the housing practices amongst Polish migrants and the factors affecting access to accommodation. Using the town of Luton just north of London as a case study, the research suggests that existing social ties strongly influence choice of settlement location in the UK and that social capital amongst the migrant community is important to support newly arrived migrants finding homes. Although most participants found their accommodation easily, we suggest that changing housing market conditions are negatively affecting migrant access to housing. The research seeks to construct a discourse of housing market dynamics amongst the Polish community in Luton, and shows that although housing experiences do improve over time, issues of insecurity, dissatisfaction and exploitation frequently arise within migrant housing pathways.The study shows that aspiration for home ownership is high, and using detailed interviews in the UK and of potential migrants in Poland, we predict a post-Brexit Britain will be a negative determinant in both the aspiration to move to the UK and to access to the housing market once there.

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