Housing and Trees in Urban Areas: IELTS Essay Question

Here is a recently reported essay question for IELTS writing task 2 and below are some ideas to help you with this topic.

Some people think that planting trees in open spaces in cities and towns is more important than building houses. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Reasons for Using City Space for Trees

  • Trees and green areas create a peaceful living environment which promotes a better living standard and better mental health.
  • Trees produce oxygen which can counteract against heavy pollution in cities and create a better quality of air.
  • Heat in cities can be better controlled by having more trees which filter the sun’s heat and offer shade. This ultimately lowers the temperature.
  • Planting more trees in urban areas brings nature into cities which is beneficial to people without access to rural areas.
  • Noise levels can also be reduced by planting trees which can act as a buffer against sound.
  • Planting more trees can make the living environment more pleasant which is thought to reduce crime to some extent. Trees encourage people to enjoy their neighbourhood and be more active in it which deters petty crime.
  • Trees offer urban wildlife a better environment to live in and play a part in the ecosystem of a city.

Reasons for Using City Space for Housing

  • Lack of affordable housing can lead to rising crime rates. Thus by having more housing, there are more opportunities for everyone to get housing.
  • Without more housing, a city is unable to grow and develop which is essential in a world with an increasing population.
  • Housing is also essential for any country which is hoping to develop its economy as workers must have access to affordable homes.
  • Shelter is a basic requirement for life.
  • Urban space is limited and priority should be given to shelter rather than creating pleasant parks.
  • Without enough homes, people can become homeless which can leads to alcoholism and drugs or slums can develop which can be detrimental to any country.

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Comments

  1. Good day! I’m little bit confuse if how can I write my arguments.. The question is ” some people think that human needs for farmland, housing and industry are more important than saving land for endangered species. Do you agree or disagree?”
    I agree, so my plan is to make 3 body paragraphs, 1 argument for agreeing that land for farms is more impt that saving land for animals, 1 for housing vs saving land for animals, and 1 for industry. Is this right and allowed?
    or should I put arguments in general (farmland, housing and industry) vs to saving land for animals?
    Thank You!

  2. Hi Liz,
    I am struggling to get ideas for task 2, can provide some suggestions to get improve please.

  3. Hi Mam,

    Your writing material & tips are really helpful & valuable. Thanks a ton.

  4. Hello teacher!
    If the statement says same people think…,however others believe … and question ask for only my opinion.should i discuss both wievs ?

  5. Farah fawzy says:

    Hey Liz ,
    In this type of essays whether I agree or disagree for example I agree to plant trees I should talk also about houses or no?

    • You can’t ignore part of the task. If you agree in trees rather than houses, you must explain why you agree with having trees rather than houses. So, you cover both in your view.

  6. Amandeep Singh says:

    Hello liz,

    First, i would like to thank you to give us such a valuable information to get our target. Also, I am very confused with those question which asked that WHAT EXTENT DO YOU AGREE OR DISAGREE? It means if i agreed with the statement then I only need to favor with the statements or can I also write the points of disagreed ???
    Can you please help me out here??
    Thanks ĺiz😊

  7. Hi Liz,
    I am really worried now because i took ielts in 23rd of July and was waiting to get results in 5 of August. But the british council emailed me and informed that my ielts results withheld without mentioning and reasons. Have your any students experienced such situation and when they got results? Is this related or influence to my band score? Will it be higher or lower?

    Sincerely,
    Sherzod

    • I have never heard of this happening before. I suggest you contact the British Council again and ask for an explanation for them withholding your results. Make it very clear in your note that you are deeply concerned and would like to know why your results are being withheld.
      Good luck
      Liz

  8. Lawrence says:

    Hello Liz,

    I have made a short introduction on the given example above. Could you kindly give me a brief comment on my use of complex sentences and punctuations, and give some suggestions for improvement?

    Planting more trees in both urban and rural areas, particularly in wide spaces such as public parks where people often gather, is commonly thought to be more essential than constructing new houses that could lead to congestion. In my opinion, I strongly agree that, the more trees that an environment has, citizens and the ecosystem would be healthier.

    Best regards,
    Lawrence

  9. Hi Liz,

    I would like to create a balanced approach pls comment on my introduction.

    It is often argued, that the act of planting trees in large areas in towns and in big cities is far better than creating and building houses for people. While i agree that shelter is essential to basic human needs, i also believe that more trees in urban areas is also useful in every human’s life.
    tnx in advance.

  10. Hi, Liz!
    I think the ideas are not enough for the essay, without covering the comparison between trees and houses. Shouldn’t we firstly discuss which is more important (for example, listing the results of lots of houses without trees or those of many trees without enough houses in Body Paragraph A, then we can give the reasons in Paragraph B and C), because the given statement mentions “more important than”? But the ideas for each are separated, without connections.
    Did I express myself clearly? I just wonder if we should compare these two items before we show our opinion about agreement.
    Thank you!

    • For an opinion essay, you put your opinion in the introduction and then explain it in the body paragraphs. You should choose a side or aim for a balanced approach but for this particular essay choosing one side is easier. These ideas are just to help you building supporting points.
      All the best
      Liz

  11. Begin again says:

    Dear Liz,

    Your valuable comments are required on my essay as I made a little effort with your help.

    Topic: Some people think that planting trees in open spaces in cities and towns is more important than building houses. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

    It depends on different individuals. In my opinion, health is one of the major concern nowadays so, we should use empty spaces for planting trees rather than building aggressively.

    On one hand, trees are very essential to be planted in metropolitan cities because people living urban areas hardly get the essence of rural area. Trees are the symbol of heathly environment and produce oxygen so, having more trees in your city will not only eliminate the health related issues but also improves the physical outlook of the city. Secondly, planting trees will bring wildlife environment to survive in city and produces a ecosystem of a city. Moreover, green belt creates a positive effect on the urban life as well as it lowers the temperature. Furthermore, noise pollution will be diminish by planting more trees, it can make the living environment more pleasant and soothing.
    On the other hand, growth is also very important building more houses means inviting more people to your area and increasing the population. Building houses can provide shelter which will fulfill the basic requirements of living beings. Secondly, urban areas easily get dense so the priority should be given to build proper housing scheme than constructing parks and losing valuable space. Because without homes, people can become homeless and frustrated which might lead to a detrimental of communities and cities. Moreover, housing is also very important for any country which is hoping to develop its economy as workers and labors should have access to affordable homes.
    All in all, I’m more concerned over human health as it is well said that “health is a wealth”. If we have healthy environment we can eventually grow. So, planting more trees will increase our growth as it can provide us a better and healthy environment.

  12. Lee Ji Eun says:

    Hi, Mrs. Liz
    Firstly, please let me say thank to you for your very useful website. Can you help me look over the introduction of a related topic to this? Here are the question and my introduction :
    Global warming is one of the most serious issues that the world is facing today. What are the causes of global warming and what measures can goverment and individuals take to tackle the issue?
    Intro :
    Global warming is one of the most desparate difficulties that human have to deal with nowadays. This essay will show a number of justifications for the problem and give a suggestion on what people can do to solve it.
    Please check the work, and if you have time, can you give me some ideas for this essay?
    Thank you.

  13. Aisha jarrar says:

    Hi Liz
    With regard to the housing and trees essay above ,is this introduction convenient or not ?

    It is thought by many people that planting trees in a metropolitan’s open spaces is more beneficial and important than constructing more houses . In my openion , although planting trees in cities open spaces is undoubtably bringing many enviromental benefits , building shelter for cities resident is considered desperate needs for standard life .
    Thanks

    • There are serious issues with vocabulary which will prevent you getting band 6 in that criteria. I also can’t see a clear opinion. Should space be used for housing or trees? You need a clear position to get a good score in IELTS writing task 2.
      Liz

      • Aisha jarrar says:

        Thanks for your comment , I really have problem in writing part .
        I have done two exam before and my weakness in writing part ,, I appreciate any effort if you could help me to tackle this problem .
        In regard to the response I got it , and I will make my response mor clear , but what do you mean about the vocabulary ? Where is the problem exactly ?

        Looking forward your help
        Warmest regards

        • Aisha jarrar says:

          What about this intruduction ? And please could you tell if I still have problem with vocabulary or what ?

          An increasing number of people supporting planting trees in open spaces in cities and town as it is provide more green and pleasant areas .in my opinion, I strongly believe that constructing houses ,which is the basic standard to live , is significantly more important than planting trees .
          Thanks

          • The vocabulary is appropriate but there are grammar errors. Make sure you introduce both sides in your background statement – you failed to mention housing.
            Liz

        • Here are all my writing task 1 lessons, videos and tips: http://ieltsliz.com/ielts-writing-task-1-lessons-and-tips/. When I comment on writing, I point out main problems – I do not offer correction. You will need to find a teacher for that.
          All the best
          Liz

  14. Pichkata Deap says:

    Hi Liz! After learning from your advice now I have another essay. Hope it is better than before.

    Topic: Marketing and promotion is the key to a successfull business.
    To what extend do you agree ?

    My introduction: Nowadays, a successful business requires many essential strategies. Some people think that marketing and promotion are necessary for business. In my opinion, I think that a skillful marketing person can persuade many customers while, a pleasant staff can give customers a clear explanation that make the business run smoothly but I strongly believe that it still need more keys to consider.
    Thank 🙂 😀

    • It’s good. However, I would re-write your thesis statement to make it clearer. “In my opinion, while I think that marketing and promotion are important, I strongly believe that having a good product is the real key to success.”. Here it is clear what I agree but explains that “the key” to success is something else. Always try to be clear about your main points and plan them. Your English language is clear.
      Liz

  15. Some people believe that open spaces can be used for more and more tree plantation, whether others argue that it is more important to build houses in open spaces than the tree plantation. I strongly believe that planting trees in open spaces is very essential.

    Firstly, trees protect us from the sun’s heat as well it keeps the temperature lower in urban areas and it gives a shade. For example, living in a tropical country have more heat than the cold as a result planting trees can avoid the high temperature. Noise levels can also reduce by planting tress which can act as a buffer against sound.
    However, nowadays people have fulfilled their basic requirement about their accommodation, constructing more housing can be useless and it may harmful for developing cities as well as towns. Tress encourage people to enjoy their neighborhood and trees and green areas create a peaceful living environment which promotes a better living standard and better mental health.

    Finally, trees produce more and more oxygen, which is very essential for humans as well as the environments. Moreover, oxygen can counteract against heavy pollution in cities and create a better quality of air. Planting more trees in urban areas brings nature into cities which is beneficial to people without access to rural areas.

    In conclusion, considering the wildlife and the betterment of the cities, it is very essential to plant more and more tress in open spaces. To reduce the sound and air pollution no other options except planting trees. Considering the above situation I strongly agree that, planting trees in open spaces is very important.

    • Dear Ma’am,
      I am eagerly awaiting for your feedback.
      Thanks

      • If your essay is posted without feedback, it means I don’t have time to give feedback. Please read the rules for posting writing at the top of this blog.
        All the best
        Liz

  16. Some people believe that open spaces can be used for more and more tree plantation, whether others argue that it is more important to build houses in open spaces than the tree plantation. I strongly believe that planting trees in open spaces is very essential.

    Planting more trees in city areas bring a beautiful look which are beneficial for the city people. Trees protect us from the sun’s heat as well it keeps the temperature lower in urban areas and it gives us a shelter. It is very essential for living in a better environment. Moreover, tress gives us oxygen which is very essential for surviving human and keep the ecosystem balanced. Though too much plantation of trees makes the city dark, especially at night, which may encourage the robbery and snatching.

    On the contrary, shelter is the basic requirement for living. Without housing it is not fulfilled our basic needs. Furthermore, towns and cities are unable to develop without constructing the new houses. Without enough home people can become homeless which may occur frustration and unpleasant situation for the people. But nowadays people have fulfilled their basic requirement about their shelter so we should use our open spaces for planting trees.

    In conclusion, for balanced ecosystem we should more concentrate for planting more and more trees. To create peaceful living environment and pleasant nature we may concentrate for planting more and more trees in open spaces in cities as well as towns. Considering the above situations, I strongly believe that planting trees in cities and urban areas is very essential.

    • This essay does not ask you to “discuss both sides” so that means you can’t discuss both sides. You are asked to give your opinion and nothing more. It is essential that you follow the instructions carefully. Give your opinion in the introduction and explain it in the body paragraphs. The whole essay is only about your opinion. So, in this essay your second body paragraph is irrelevant. Please follow all my lessons before posting. Read all model essays carefully to ensure you are aware of the requirements of IELTS.
      All the best
      Liz

  17. Oyelade Ola says:

    Hello Liz,
    Kindly review this essay for me. Will it get up to band 7?
    Question: Some people think that excessive use of mobile phones and computers badly affects teenagers’ writing and reading skills. Do you agree or disagree. Give your opinion.

    Technological advancement has made the use of mobile devices and computer much more fascinating.Thus, people tend to invest more time into the use of these devices. I completely agree with the opinion that this act is having negative impacts on teenagers’ writing and reading skills because of increasing poor academic performance of the youngsters.

    Teenagers’ writing skills have suffered greatly due to excessive use of cell phones and computers. Firstly, children are no longer interested in developing their natural handwriting skills. In other words, most of them prefer to type documents on the computer rather than using their hands to write. Consequently, many have lost touch with the ability to write legibly which has had a detrimental effect on academic performance. Secondly, most teenagers have lost the ability to spell correctly since most of these devices have software that can spell-check words and also assist in constructing correct sentences.

    Furthermore, reading skills have also been poor owing to uncontrolled use of technological devices. With the advent of sophisticated applications for chatting and browsing the internet such as whatsapp, Facebook,Google and so on, many teenagers spend most of their time online. As a result, they are left with little or no time to read and study independently. Also, availability of e-books have made many to loose interest in reading conventional books.

    In conclusion, as much as I agree with the opinion that excessive use of mobile phones and computers among teenagers have negative impact on their reading and writing skills, I believe that there will be great improvement if things are done with moderation.

  18. kiranmai says:

    Hi Mam,

    I come across the following questions of Writing Task 2 in Arts. Can you please provides some ideas on how to work on this Essay.

    Artists need a certain amount of freedom to develop their creativity. Some people think that artists should have total freedom to express any thoughts and ideas.

    To what extent do you agree or disagree?

    • This is all about censorship. It’s about whether artists should be free to say, write or draw any image they want to encourage creativity. You must decide if that freedom of expression should include violent images, pornographic images or other images which are damaging to children or society.
      All the best
      Liz

  19. Hey, Lizz thank you so much for such an amazing blog
    i would be delighted if you would go over my essay and predict my estimated band score
    With recent development in technologies like e books, some people feel that printed media like books will soon be a thing of the past. Other feel that these form of media will never disappear?

    The use of mobile phones and the Internet has become so rampant that some people started adopting the prevalent (pervasive, widespread, ubiquitous) notion that mobile phones and the Internet will obviate the need for physical books. However, I dissent (differ, demure, diverge) from this perception and pertinaciously believe that physical books are here to stay for a couple reasons.

    On the one hand, it is an incontrovertible notion that e books bring immense advantages. For example, they do not require physical space, which makes them more appealing to carry, and this ultimately spurs the proliferation of e books. In fact for being user-friendly e books are deemed as the go to choice for college students as they opt for brandishing Ipads, which are teeming with myriads of e books, rather going around campus, saddled (lumbered, encumbered, burdened, hampered) with all the cumbersome books.

    Apart from the feature of being portable, e books are cheaper to produce as they do not require paper, which makes them even more appealing to the environment conscious readers who are cognizant of the wreaks it would havoc on our forests. Moreover, as the Internet facilities the distribution of e books, they are becoming more and more accessible rather than printed books.

    On the other hand, there some people who uphold (espouse, cleave to, cling to) the fact that printed books are here to stay because of the feel and the tactile relationship a person fosters while reading a physical copy. There is nothing more enjoyable for a devouring (avid, ardent, fervent, voracious) reader than curling in a quilt with a book in their hands reveling in the tranquility and redolence printed books provide. Moreover, reading an electronic book can be something of a menace when it comes to concentration, as it make the reader more predisposed to distraction as it is swarming with a lot of other superfluous (gratuitous, redundant) functions and the access to the Internet. For instance, while reading a book one is lured (seduce, allure, entice) by the number of books available and the Internet. This irrevocably, culminates in the absorption of other extraneous information or book rather than the book intended to read. On top of that, reading an e book can have an insidious (pernicious) effect on the eyes of the reader, which makes them more susceptible to eye related problems.

    In a nutshell, even though e books and mobile phones offer a number of advantages in terms of convenience and price, they do not evoke (invoke) the feelings printed copies do. So the possibilities of printed media being supplanted by e books remain relatively remote.

    • I am happy to comment on students’ writing. However, you must first do all my free lessons and video lessons to learn more. Also make sure you write the full essay question which includes the instructions, for example “To what extent do you agree or disagree?”. Also don’t post an essay of over 400 words when you are aiming for between 250 and 300. Take your time to learn first.
      All the best
      Liz

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