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In the spotlight: Fourteen EU housing markets analysed in EMF Study


01 Jun 2010


Brussels, 1 June 2010 – For immediate release


The European Mortgage Federation (EMF) has published a study on the Cost of Housing in Europe. This study has been primarily conceived as the update to a 2006 comparative overview focusing on the transaction costs related to the purchase of a “typical property” associated with a “typical mortgage loan”, and includes fourteen EU housing markets: Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. These transaction costs vary considerably in definition and level in individual countries, and they include inter alia, taxes, legal fees, registering a mortgage with a land or mortgage register, property valuations, solicitors’ or notary fees, and bank charges. The 2010 edition of the study reveals some interesting findings, although historical comparisons were not always possible given that the sample of countries saw some changes between the two studies.


In general, a number of conclusions can be drawn:


The total costs associated with a house purchase remained stable (5.3%, compared with 5.1% in 2006). Individual countries featured in both studies, for the most part, showed a decrease in total costs;

The largest component of total costs continued to be property taxes;

Unsurprisingly, property prices reflected in the value for “typical house price purchase” increased significantly in the period;

Average LTV values on mortgage loans remained essentially the same.


Interestingly, there also was no conclusive evidence to show that more subdued house price appreciation was correlated to markets with higher transaction costs.  In fact, some of the countries with the highest transaction costs, also experienced major house price inflation. Nor did property tax levels show any attempt by governments to dampen demand through fiscal policy.


This Study is attached to this press release and is available for everyone on 


Contact Persons:


Susan Yavari Tel: +32 2 285 40 46

Head of Economic Affairs


Alessandro Sciamarelli Tel: +32 2 285 40 42

Statistical Adviser 


For further information on the activities of the European Mortgage Federation please contact:


Tel. +32 2 285 40 30 - Fax +32 2 285 40 31

E-Mail: - Website:



Notes to the Editor:

Established in 1967, the European Mortgage Federation (EMF) is an international non-profit institution under Belgian Law (AISBL) representing the interests of mortgage lenders and covered bond issuers at European level. The EMF represents a growth industry worth 6.1 trillion as at the end of 2008, which is approximately 49.8% of the EU’s GDP. 


In 2004, the Federation established the European Covered Bond Council (ECBC), which represents covered bond stakeholders from Europe and around the world.


The Secretariat, a team of 12 people based in Brussels, co-ordinates the activities of the Federation and maintains contact with the European institutions.