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Press Statement


10 December 2020

Press Statement Tenure and Households in Ireland 2016-2019

In 2016 58% of houses owned outright were detached homes
  • In Q2 2019, 17.1% of people in household tenures ‘rented from a local authority’ were unemployed, down from 21.5% in Q2 2018
  • Family units composed of ‘couple with children’ had the highest labour force participation rate in Q2 2019, at 71.6%, compared to a ‘single-person household’ at 46.7% (State: 62.1%)
  • In 2018 the highest equivalised disposable median income was among people in households that ‘own with a mortgage or a loan’ at €27,082, while those who ‘rented from a local authority’ had the lowest income at €14,612
  • In 2016, ‘detached house’ was the most prevalent dwelling type for those who ‘own with a mortgage or a loan’ (47.8%)
  • A ‘couple with children’, totalling four people, was the most common family unit category in 2016 by number of persons, at 240,762 households, or 14.2% of all households

Go to release: Tenure & Households in Ireland, 2016 -2019

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) has today (10 December 2020) published, ‘Tenure & Households in Ireland, 2016 – 2019’. This publication analyses recent social and economic conditions in Ireland with a focus on households by tenure, dwelling type and family unit composition. These statistics are based on a range of CSO sources including the Census, Labour Force Survey and the Survey on Income & Living Conditions (EU-SILC), Household Finance and Consumption Survey, and administrative data from sources such as Revenue and Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection. The report provides new insights into social and economic life in Ireland.

Commenting on the report, Michael Courtney, Statistician, said:

‘At €27,082, the highest median equivalised disposable income in 2018 was among people in household tenures that ‘own with a mortgage or a loan’, while the lowest was among people in tenures ‘rented from a local authority’ at €14,612. The State median was €22,872.

The labour force participation rate fell slightly from 62.3% to 62.1% between Q2 2018 and Q2 2019. The highest labour force participation rate was 75.3% among persons who ‘rent from a landlord’ in Q2 2019 while the lowest rate was 44.5% for persons in tenures ‘rented from a local authority’. The largest change in the participation rate over this time period was a drop of 2.2 percentage points for those who ‘rent from a landlord’.

By family unit type, 'couple with children' had the highest labour force participation rate at 71.6%. The lowest rate was among single person households at 46.7%.

People in households that are ‘rented from a local authority’ had the highest ‘at risk of poverty‘ rate in 2018 of 41.7% and the highest deprivation rate of 39.6%.

In 2016, more than half (58.4%) of all homes that were ‘owned outright’ were a ‘detached house’, while ‘detached house’ was also being the most prevalent dwelling type for those who own their home with a mortgage or loan (47.8%).’

Mayo had the highest proportion of household tenures 'owned outright' at 46.7% in 2016, compared with 36.0% for the State. The highest proportion that 'own with a mortgage or a loan' was 43.3% in Meath, compared to 31.6% in the State overall, while Galway City had the highest proportion who 'rent from a landlord' at 37.1%, compared to the State at 19.2%. Cork City had the highest proportion of tenures 'rented from a local authority' at 16.5% (State 8.4%).’

Commenting further on the report, Declan Smyth, Senior Statistician, said: ‘This publication was developed in collaboration with the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage. It is an example of the policy relevant research projects that the CSO are developing as part of its’ leadership role of the Irish Statistical System (ISS). Our goal is to maximise the variety and volume of data available, to provide high quality information to the Government, businesses and citizens. The CSO is in a unique position to gather and link administrative data sources with CSO held datasets and evaluate their potential for statistical use. Our aim is to ensure that citizens can live in an informed society while at the same time ensuring adherence to the relevant data protection legislation.’

For further information contact:

Michael Courtney (+353) 1 498 4241 or Declan Smyth (+353) 1 498 4228

or email

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