The need to consolidate European housing market data was emphasised in a recent piece from the FT. They stated that based on the current information available, there is difficulty in finding relevant European housing market data for market comparison purposes.
Creating such a database does make sense, however we also feel it might not be as easily done as said since there can never be a direct comparison between two markets anyway. For the purpose of information however it is certainly a great idea.
As FT stated, the property market in any country is important for economic purposes. Everything gets affected by the property market: from banks to jobs, life is certainly different for even the average Joe if the outlook is rosy as opposed to dull. People simply have more cash flow in good times.
Consolidating data to bridge this gap would make perfect sense for developers and even political leaders. Decisions could be formed with a relative peace of mind by having updated information at hand. Plus, being able to see data with one view instead of searching for the needle in the haystack will be a cinch for researchers.
At present, data for housing comes in all types of time periods. The new FT resource will be a great tool which will save time and effort for the rest of us.
In reality it shouldn’t be that hard to collect data across the board without chasing needles, but unfortunately it is. Britain’s means of measure have even been called imperfect by the FT article.
At present Eurostat is responsible for collecting housing data from each country but because there aren’t really any laws or even rules in place, each country acts at their own peril. We can imagine this process to be lengthy and complicated. plus red tape would also slow collection of data down considerably.
FT reports that Eurostat should have statistical figures for some countries within the next couple of years.
A Eurostat spokesman said: “The project to develop house price indices is a high priority and it is progressing well. The project is one with a long duration, primarily due to its methodological and technical complexity and the need to agree on a harmonised approach to give comparable results, knowing that housing markets, data sources and data availability vary considerably”.
What do you think? Do you feel it is important to collect viable and identical housing data throughout Europe or is this just a waste of time?