Tenure Status in Census 2022

The CSO have started releasing the results from Census 2022. Reports on selected topics will be published over the next year. The summary results for each topic are available here.

The release includes details of tenure status by household which are shown below for each Census since 1981.

In Census 2022, the number of households increased to 1.84 million from 1.68 million in Census 2016. Average household size was largely unchanged (2.74 versus 2.75 in 2016).

The number of households who are homeowners rose from 1.15 million in 2016 to 1.21 million in 2022. This increase was entirely due to an increase in the number of outright owners without a mortgage which increased from 612 thousand to 680 thousand. There was a small decline in the number of homeowners with a mortgage, despite rising mortgage drawdowns by first-time buyers.

In overall terms, the homeownership rate declined from 67.6 per cent to 65.9 per cent. It should be noted though that the share of household forms where the tenure status was not stated was 4.4 per cent in 2022. This is up from 3.1 per cent in 2016 and just 0.4 per cent in 1981.

Excluding households who do not state their tenure status the homeownership rate declined from 69.8 per cent in 2016 to 68.9 per cent in 2022.

The number of households renting from a private landlord increased to 331 thousand in 2022 from 310 thousand in 2016. The private renting rate was essentially unchanged (with this particularly so if ‘not stated’ are excluded). This increase in households renting privately showing in the Census is in contrast to other sources showing a decline, such as RTB registrations.

The only significant tenure status showing an increase are those renting social housing. The number of households renting from a local authority or approved housing body rose from 160 thousand in 2016 to 183 thousand in 2022, representing 10 per cent of households.

More detailed results, including breakdowns by age, nationality and other characteristics, will be published at the end of July.

2 replies on “Tenure Status in Census 2022”

Thank you, Seamus, for this post. It provokes a number of observations.

The first is the wonderful and welcome increase in the number of households (which, of course, is being driven by the increase in population), accompanied by an almost unchanged number of occupants per household – and not the decline that other advanced economies are experiencing.

The next is the prevalence (around two-thirds) of owner occupation, with or without a mortgage – though, as a share of the total it is falling from the peak in 1991 following the initial recovery from the GUBU decade. These households provide the dominant political force in the polity. While individually and in smaller kinship, social or occupational groupings these households are often paragons of decency and communality, the majority collectively, and largely unintentionally, are greedy, selfish home and other asset-owning capitalists seeking to protect and increase the accumulation of economic rents in the value of their properties and other assets. This is the ageing conservative cohort that has a higher presensity to voter than other cohorts and provides a plurality, if not a majority, for the parties that pander to their desires, whims and prejudices. This is the principle cause of low growth, low productivity and under-investment in productive activities in many advanced economies. While there obviously isn’t a perfect mapping, it is no coincidence that the split of non-owner occupied/owner occupied matches the SF-supporting/supporting anyone except SF split in the electorate.

The final point is the lack of relevant information provided on non-owner occupier households. Some of this seems to be due to not asking the right questions – so that responders’ situations don’t fall in to the categories provided, but there also seems to be a willingness to accept a “not stated” response.

Apologies for errors – “propensity” not “presensity” and “principal” not “principle”.

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