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Date Published: Thu, 29 Jan 2015



The Central Statistics Office (CSO) today published the results of the 2013 Household Finance and Consumption Survey 2013 (PDF 768KB)  which was undertaken between March and September 2013. The HFCS is designed to collect data on household assets and liabilities, income, consumption and credit constraints. The survey was conducted by the CSO on behalf of the Central Bank of Ireland as part of European Central Bank (ECB) HFCS network. This is the first time the HFCS has been carried out in Ireland and in all 5,419 relevant respondent households participated in the survey.


Principal Features


  • Some 70.5% of all households own their own main residence (either with or without a mortgage) while 10.8% of households own land and 13.8% own other property. The proportion of households who have at least one type of real asset is 95.3% (see Table A and Table 1).
  • The median value of the household main residence (HMR), for those households which owned their own main residence, is €150,000 while the median value for land is €348,900. The median value of all real assets, for those who have any real asset, is €163,000 per household (see Table 4).
  • The HMR represents 53.3% of the total value of all real assets while land is 21.4% and other property 14.4%. On the other hand vehicles and valuables only account for 2.9% and 2.0% respectively of the value of all real assets (see Table 7).
  • The most common form of financial asset is savings (deposit or savings accounts as well ascurrent accounts with positive balances), held by 88.6% of households, the median value of which is €4,500. The median value of all financial assets, for those who have any financial asset, is €6,300 per household (see Tables 2 and 5).
  • Savings represent 54.9% of the total value of all financial assets with voluntary pensions next highest at 21.6%. Other financial assets such as shares and bonds and mutual funds were lower at 10.4% and 8.7% respectively of all financial assets (see Table 8).
  • 56.8% of all households have some form of debt, with 33.9% of all households having a mortgage on their main residence. The median debt of this mortgage is €129,000 while it is €1,000 for overdrafts and €1,400 for credit cards. Overall, the median debt is €63,000 for those households with any form of debt (see Tables 3, 6 and 9).
  • In the three years prior to the survey some 28.1% of households applied for a new loan. Of these 21.3% were either refused or didn’t get the full amount they were originally looking for. In addition, 12.4% of all households didn’t apply for a loan because they thought they would be rejected, leading to 18.4% of all households being credit constrained (see Table 10).
  • Looking at the sustainability of debt, the median debt to asset ratio (or the ratio of total debt to total real and financial assets) for households with debts is 37.7% while the median debt to income ratio is 100.4%. For households with a mortgage on the main residence, the median loan to value ratio is 73.5% (see Table 11).
  • While the median gross wealth (real plus financial assets) is €172,500 per household, mean gross wealth is €290,700. Median net wealth (gross wealth less debt) is €102,600 per household while the mean figure is €218,700. Households in the bottom fifth of income distribution have 11.3% of the net wealth compared to 39.3% for the top fifth of households (see Table 12).



                          Table A: Summary of national data 

Type of asset or debt Percentage of Households with:  Median value, conditional on participation 
  % €000's
 Household Main Residence (HMR) 70.5  150.0 
 Land 10.8  348.9 
 Other Real Estate Property 13.8  140.0 
 Self Employment Business Wealth 20.2  10.0 
 Vehicles 82.5  6.0 
 Valuables 61.0  3.2 
 (Any) Real Assets 95.3  163.0 
 Savings 88.6  4.5 
 Bonds or Mutual Funds 7.5  12.0 
 Shares 13.1  4.0 
 Voluntary Pension 10.0  44.7 
 Other Financial Asset 6.3  2.0 
 Total Financial Assets 89.8  6.3 
 Mortgage on HMR 33.9  129.0 
 Mortgage on Other Property 5.9  140.0 
 Total Non-mortgage Loan 29.6  5.0 
 Overdraft 9.3  1.0 
 Credit Card debt 17.5  1.4 
 All Debt 56.8  63.0 


Household Finance and Consumption Survey results is available on the CSO website:

Household Finance and Consumption Survey 2013 (PDF 768KB)


For further information:
Please contact Paul Crowley at 021 453 5090 or Gerard Reilly at 021 453 5700.


Central Statistics Office                                                     29th January 2015

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For further information, contact:

Paul Crowley (+353) 21 453 5090

Gerard Reilly (+353) 21 453 5700

or email

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