General housing allowance: Recipient households  

Updated: 16.12.2014 - Next update: 18.12.2015
   
 
 
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General housing allowance: Recipient households

A total of 206,092 households were in receipt of the general housing allowance as of December 2014, 7% more than in the previous year. The number of recipient households has increased six years in a row from 2009 to 2014, a sign of the prolonged economic downturn.

The number of single-person households has increased faster than that of any other type of household. In December 2014 single-person households accounted for 58% of all recipient households, up from 47% in 2000.

The number of recipient households grew rapidly as a result of the 2009 financial crisis and has continued to rise at a variable pace. During 2014, the number of recipient households increased by nearly 14,000. The number of general housing allowance recipients was 66,700 (48%) higher in 2014 than at the end of 2008.

Comparable data on the number of households receiving general housing allowance exists from the year 2000 onwards. Prior to 2000, the recipient population included a large proportion of students, who now are covered by the student housing supplement scheme. The number of recipient households was higher in 2014 than at any time since the year 2000.

Source:
Kela


Description of indicator

The number of households receiving general housing allowance at the end of December analysed by type of household.

The indicator represents the trend in the number of low-income households whose housing costs are subsidised by the government. It also shows the percentage of certain groups, including families with children, as a share of the total recipient population.

The general housing allowance is mainly provided to economically active households, not to pensioners or, as a general rule, students.

The number of recipient households typically rises during economic downturns. A number of legislative amendments have also had an impact on the number of housing allowance recipients. For example, students who were married, cohabiting or living in a communal household were in the year 2000 removed from the scope of the general housing allowance scheme and moved to the student housing supplement scheme.