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What is HFCS?

HFCS is the Household Finance and Consumption Survey. This survey is designed to find out more about household finance and consumption in Ireland. 

Who is conducting the HFCS survey in Ireland?

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) is conducting the HFCS in Ireland on behalf of the Central Bank of Ireland.

What is the purpose of this Survey?

The purpose of HFCS is to gather micro-level structural information on Euro area households’ assets and liabilities. The survey also collects additional information in order to help policy makers at EU level to examine the economic situation. 

When will HFCS be carried out?

HFCS data collection will commence in Ireland in March 2013.

How was I chosen for this Survey?

Since interviewing every household in Ireland would be very expensive and difficult, we use scientific statistical methods to randomly select households. While participation in our study is voluntary, it is important that selected adults take part so all households throughout the country will be represented.

What do I do if somebody calls to my door?

If you are to be included in the survey, a HFCS interviewer will call to your door. All our interviewers carry CSO photo identification so please ask to see this. Additionally, all HFCS interviewers will use a laptop computer for the interview.

If you are in any doubt as to whether or not they represent the CSO, you can contact us at 1890 252 293 (LoCall) to verify his\her identification.

How long does the survey take?

The questionnaire is tailored to ask questions depending on individual circumstances. Responses will dictate subsequent question routing, thereby varying the length of the survey. Appointments can be made with the interviewer.

What type of questions will I have to answer?

The HFCS questionnaire consists of two main parts:

  1. questions relating to the household as a whole, including questions on:
  • holdings of real assets (e.g. main residence, other properties, vehicles and valuables of the household, loans)
  • other kinds of household debt (e.g. overdrafts, credit lines, credit-card borrowing, leases, consumer/instalment loans)
  • financial and business assets
  1. questions relating to individual household members, covering
  • demographics (for all household members)
  • employment
  • future pension entitlements
  • income (for household members aged 16 and over).
Will my answers be kept confidential?

All individual information obtained by the CSO is treated as strictly confidential. The information is used solely for statistical purposes. Results are published in aggregate form and great care is taken to ensure that details relating to an identifiable person or undertaking are not inadvertently divulged. This confidentiality is guaranteed by law (Part V, Statistics Act, 1993).

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