Why do I need to read this guide?

Not every neighbourhood plan will focus on housing in enough detail for a housing needs assessment to be necessary. However, for those that do, the Housing Needs Assessment (HNA) guide has been written to assist you with the process.

The housing needs assessment guide explains what is involved in undertaking a HNA and what data and resources will be required to complete the assessment.

What will I learn from this guide?

  • What a housing needs assessment entails at the neighbourhood level
  • Which data may be required in undertaking a housing needs assessment
  • How to recognise different types of housing tenure required

When should I read this guide?

You may wish to read the How to assess and allocate sites for development guide.

Further reading

Because housing needs assessment work and site assessment work are often done concurrently, you may wish to read the ‘How to assess and allocate sites for development‘ guide.


A revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and Planning Practice Guidance (PPG) is currently being prepared by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG). Therefore any references to the NPPF and PPG within our toolkits and guidance documents may need to change and could be out of date when the revised NPPF is published. Please be aware of this when reading our documents.

How to undertake a Housing Needs Assessment (HNA) (6.5MB pdf)