23 Apr 24 | News

New report - Housing Observatories: A View of Affordability in Times of Soaring Inflation

LISER researchers co-authored a European publication following the 4th edition of the International Social Housing Festival

April 2024 - a newly released publication ‘Housing Observatories: A View of Affordability in Times of Soaring Inflation’ coordinated by ISHF (International Social Housing Festival) was co-authored by LISER researchers Kristell Leduc, Nathalie Lorentz, Patrick Bousch and Eugenio Peluso. The innovative report showcases research from Luxembourg’s Housing Observatory among the other European Housing Observatories.

A result of the ISHF2023 Conference, the novel report is a collaborative effort by observatories and institutes that manage housing data at regional and local level across Europe, with the objective or sharing experiences and learning from each other. The workshop Housing Observatories: a view of affordability in times of soaring inflation brought together 11 observatories from different cities and regions in Europe in the framework of the International Social Housing Festival in Barcelona.

In LISER’s chapter, its co-authors presented the Housing Observatory of Luxembourg, its objectives and studies. It focused particularly on two main indicators developed these last years, namely the Net Housing Affordability Ratio (NHAR) and Cumulative Housing Deprivation (CHD).

Net Housing Affordability Ratio (NHAR)

NHAR is an indicator that highlights the ability of households to access and maintain themselves in housing. It measures the ratio between housing costs, which include mortgage payments, rents and typical household operational expenditures such as electricity and heating, and the household’s disposable income (EUROSTAT definition). The latter is defined as the financial resources available for household consumption and savings, i.e. after taxes and social security contributions. An examination of this indicator offers valuable insights into fluctuations in housing costs.

Cumulative Housing Deprivation (CHD)

The aim of CHD is to measure and assess the extent of housing deprivation within a population. This multidimensional approach to housing conditions therefore complements the NHAR, which focuses on the financial side. It allows for a better understanding of the housing conditions of the least well-off in a holistic rather than unidimensional way. Moreover, this methodology can provide a synthetic assessment of both the incidence and severity of housing deprivation across the population (see Aaberge, Peluso, Sigstad, 2019 for further details).

Learn more about NHAR and CHD as well as works of other European Housing Observatories in the publication found here.

More about Luxembourg’s Housing Observatory (Observatoire de l'Habitat):

In 2003, the Housing Observatory was established within the Department of Housing of the Ministry of Middle Classes, Tourism and Housing. Its primary objective is to provide essential information to help guide housing policy and inform the public on housing-related matters in Luxembourg. Since its founding, the Housing Observatory has been put in charge of several tasks including data collection, monitoring, analysis and the dissemination of information related to housing, and also provides support for the development of housing policy.

For example, in 2023, two laws on housing subsidies and affordable housing were enacted with inputs from the Housing Observatory. LISER is a key partner of the Ministry of Housing in fulfilling the missions of the Housing Observatory. This public research institute is dedicated to both fundamental and applied research in the social sciences, and has been entrusted with the mission to enhance knowledge, provide insights for public authorities and socio-economic actors, and inform key stakeholders and the wider public.


More about the ISHF Conference:

Launched in Amsterdam in 2017 and by now in its fourth edition, the ISHF has become a point of reference for social and affordable housing providers, policymakers, urbanists, architects, activists, and researchers. On 7-9 June 2023, more than 2,100 of them came from 82 countries to Barcelona to debate how housing systems are facing emerging social and economic challenges across the world. At the 2023 conference, Patrick Bousch and Kristell Leduc presented the Luxembourg’s Housing Observatory to shed light on its mission, outputs, etc.