22.11.2022 valid documentation

Basic data of the statistics

Data description

The statistics on building and dwelling production describe the volume of newbuilding subject to building permits and the volume of building production. The volume unit for building permits and buildings started and completed is the number of buildings, cubic volume and the number of dwellings. The volume index of newbuilding describes the value at constant prices of ongoing newbuilding relative to the comparison period, the base year of the index.

Newbuilding refers to construction subject to building permits, which results in a new building, new space in connection with an existing building or a change comparable to reconstruction.

Statistical population

The population of the statistics on building and dwelling production comprises new buildings requiring building permits, extensions and alterations comparable to reconstruction, data on their building stage and new dwelling units located in them. The statistics are based on total data, which are gradually supplemented as municipal building supervisors enter data in the register.

Statistical unit

The statistical units of the statistics on building and dwelling production are building and dwelling.

Unit of measure

The measurement units for granted building permits and building projects started and completed are the number of building projects, cubic volume, floor area and the number of dwellings. The measurement unit of the volume index of newbuilding is the index point figure and year-on-year change.

Base period

There is no base period for building permits granted, building projects started and completed in the statistics on building and dwelling production. The base year of the volume index of newbuilding included in the statistics is 2015=100.

Reference period

The reference period of the statistics on building and dwelling production is one month. The statistics are published at a lag of around eight weeks from the end of the statistical reference month.

Reference area

The statistics on building and dwelling production are published on the level of the whole country.

Sector coverage

The statistics on building and dwelling production cover all categories according to the Classification of Buildings 2018:
01 Residential buildings 
02 Free-time residential buildings 
03 Commercial buildings 
04 Office buildings 
05 Transport and communications buildings 
06 Buildings for institutional care 
07 Assembly buildings 
08 Educational buildings 
09 Industrial and mining and quarrying buildings 
10 Energy supply buildings 
11 Public utility buildings 
12 Warehouses 
13 Rescue service buildings 
14 Agricultural buildings and livestock shelters 
19 Other buildings

Time coverage

For building permits, the time series is updated starting from 1995 and for the volume index of newbuilding starting from 2000, monthly based on how the data on buildings and dwellings are updated in the Population Information System.

Frequency of dissemination

The data of the statistics are published monthly on Statistics Finland's website.

Concepts

Building

A building refers to any independent structure permanently constructed or erected on its site. It has its own entrance and contains covered space intended for different purposes, usually enclosed within outer walls or walls separating it from other structures (buildings).

Caves and other subterranean spaces which are mainly enclosed within rock or similar walls and/or which do not contain structures comparable to the interior structures of buildings proper, for example underground oil tanks, are not buildings.

Stalls, kiosks, etc. that do not contain space separated by closed walls, and transportable caravans, ships, etc. are not classified as buildings.

The building stock statistics do not include:
- free-time residences
- buildings intended for storing liquids
- buildings used only in agricultural production
- sauna buildings belonging to residential buildings
- outhouses of residential buildings
- buildings entirely controlled by foreign missions
- buildings of the Armed Forces
- air raid shelters
except in cases where such buildings are occupied or contain business premises.

The data on buildings come from the Population Information System of the Population Register Centre.

Building material

The building material refers to the material from which the vertical supporting structures of the building are mainly made. The classification is as follows:
- concrete, light concrete
- brick
- steel
- wood
- other, unknown.

Cubic capacity of a building

The cubic capacity of a building is calculated in accordance with the Finnish Standards Association's standard SFS 2460, RT 120.12.

Dwelling

A dwelling refers to a room or a suite of rooms which is intended for year-round habitation; is furnished with a kitchen, kitchenette or cooking area; and has a floor area of at least 7 square metres. Every dwelling must have its own entrance. A single-family house may be entered through an enclosed porch or veranda. If a dwelling is entered through the premises of another dwelling, it is not regarded as a separate dwelling but instead those two constitute one dwelling.

Intended use of building

The intended use of a building is determined according to the purpose for which the largest part of the gross floor area of the building is used. The categories are as follows:
- residential buildings
- free-time residential buildings
- commercial buildings
- office buildings
- transport and communications buildings
- buildings for institutional care
- assembly buildings
- educational buildings
- industrial and mining and quarrying buildings
- energy supply buildings
- public utility buildings
- warehouses
- rescue services buildings
- agricultural buildings and livestock shelters
- other buildings.

The classification of the intended use of buildings is given in Statistics Finland's Handbook Classification of Buildings 2018. Not all the classes in the building classification are included in the Statitics Finland's building stock.

Type of building

Residential buildings are classified according to type of building as follows:
- Detached houses: residential buildings containing 1 to 2 dwellings, including semi-detached houses and other comparable detached residential buildings (e.g. permanently occupied free-time residences)
- Terraced houses: residential buildings with at least three adjoining dwellings
- Blocks of flats: residential buildings of at least three dwellings in which at least two dwellings are located on top of each other and which do not belong to the previous categories
- Other buildings: also includes buildings whose type is unknown.

Accuracy, reliability and timeliness

Overall accuracy

The data on building projects in the statistics on building and dwelling production are received weekly from the Digital and Population Data Agency. These data include building permits granted and building projects started and completed. Data reported by municipalities on building projects started are accumulated at a delay to the Digital and Population Data Agency. Due to the delay the statistics for the latest month are always based on incomplete data at the time of production. The data of the volume index of newbuilding are never final, because data on starts of building projects subject to building permits are continuously updated. At the beginning of 2015, the Digital and Population Data Agency adopted a permanent building identifier in the entire Population Information System. The data released prior to 2015 are not directly comparable with those released after 2015.

Due to the slow accumulation of notices of building starts, the actual number of building projects started is estimated using the number of known starts. This is done with a statistical regression model, which aims to get closer to the actual number of building projects started. The inflating coefficients used in the model are updated annually.

In the inflating method of starts data, the approximation estimated by the model of the actual number of projects started is compared with the current data on building projects started. The difference between these is an estimate of the number of building projects that have not yet been reported to the Digital and Population Data Agency. Projects started are drawn from building permits not started according to that difference. The monthly inflating process of starts is fully automated.

The estimation of starts data is made monthly for the latest 24 months. Data older than that are not estimated. Building permits not started taking part in the draw are limited so that building projects of over 50,000 cubic metres are excluded. When setting parameters for the estimation model, the reported known starts data are used. The accuracy of the estimation of starts is influenced only by the cumulative rate of start data and its annual random variation. Estimated starts data are used in the calculation of the volume index of newbuilding. To improve the completion data of building projects, notices of moves are utilised in the compilation of statistics. Construction projects are combined by means of building codes to the Digital and Population Data Agency's data on moves and the building is classified as completed if it is occupied.

Timeliness and punctuality

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are released at a lag of around eight weeks.

Timeliness

There are typically around eight weeks between the last day of the statistical reference period and the publication of the initial results.

Punctuality

There is no delay in releasing data on the statistics on building and dwelling production. The data are released on the predetermined dates and in accordance with Statistics Finland's release calendar.

Completeness

The statistics are available to the fullest extent possible.

Data revision

More detailed information about the revision outlines is available on Statistics Finland's website.

Data revision - practice

The source data for the statistics on building and dwelling production are the weekly data on changes in buildings supplied by the Digital and Population Data Agency, which contain data on each change in the building stock during the week. These include new buildings and permits, changes to unit characteristics and supplementations to such data.

Sampling error

Total data are used in the statistics, whereby sampling errors do not occur.

Due to the total data, there is no random variation caused by the sampling of the estimator.

Non-sampling error

In addition to the slow accumulation of data, municipalities' divergent practices in granting and reporting building permits sometimes cause measurement or reporting errors in register data, which are corrected.

Coverage error

Data reported by municipalities on building projects started are accumulated at a delay to the Digital and Population Data Agency. Due to the delay the statistics for the latest month are always based on incomplete data at the time of production. The data of the volume index of newbuilding are never final, because data on starts of building projects subject to building permits are continuously updated.

There is no over-coverage in the statistics on building and dwelling production.

The total number of units in the statistics on building and dwelling production is included both in the data collection of the statistics and in administrative sources.

Measurement error

In addition to the slow accumulation of data, municipalities' divergent practices in granting and reporting building permits sometimes cause measurement or reporting errors in register data, which are corrected.

Processing error

Inference utilising available floor area and volume data related to the process of correcting measurement or reporting errors in register data may cause processing errors. It may be difficult to detect especially errors of small magnitude.

Comparability

Comparability - geographical

The data for the statistics on building and dwelling production are municipal building project data that are reported to the register. Data derive from all Finnish municipalities, so the data are also geographically comparable.

The statistics on building and dwelling production do not include comparisons between countries.

Comparability - over time

The time series of the statistics on building and dwelling production are temporally comparable from 1995 to 2015. At the beginning of 2015, the Digital and Population Data Agency adopted a permanent building identifier in the entire Population Information System. The data released prior to 2015 are not directly comparable with those released after 2015.

From 1995 to the beginning of June 2020, the statistics on building and dwelling production have had 303 reference periods. The volume index of newbuilding, which is included in the statistics and has the base period 2015, has had 243 reference periods starting from the year 2000. From the beginning of 2015, the number of directly comparable reference periods for the set of statistics is 63.

Coherence - cross domain

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production differ partly from the stock of buildings and dwellings. Buildings and dwellings that are no longer included in the existing building and dwelling stock are removed annually from the building and dwelling stock. These include, for example, demolished and destroyed buildings and long-term unoccupied dwellings. In addition, extensions directed at buildings and alterations comparable to reconstruction are registered in the statistics on building and dwelling production at the starting time of the project, but in the statistics on building and dwelling stock in the original year of completion of the building.

Coherence - sub-annual and annual statistics

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are always compiled monthly in the same manner so the data are congruent.

Coherence -national accounts

The data of statistics on building and dwelling production are used as source data for national accounts.

Source data and data collections

Source data

The source data for the statistics on building and dwelling production are the weekly data on changes in buildings supplied by the Digital and Population Data Agency, which contain data on each change in the building stock during the week. These include new buildings and permits, changes to unit characteristics and supplementations to such data.

Data collection

The statistics on building and dwelling production do not have their own data collection.

Frequency of data collection

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are updated according to the weekly data supplied by the Digital and Population Data Agency.

Cost and burden

In 2019, altogether 258 working days were used for the production of the statistics on building and dwelling production. Administrative register data are used for the statistics, so there is no response burden. 

Methods

Statistical processing

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are based on data reported by municipalities on the construction stages of granted building permits. Data reported by municipalities are accumulated at a delay to the Digital and Population Data Agency. The statistics on building and dwelling production become revised most during approximately 12 months from the first release.

Data compilation

The population of the statistics on building and dwelling production comprises new buildings requiring building permits, extensions and alterations comparable to reconstruction, their building stage data and new dwelling units located in them. The statistics are based on total data, which are gradually supplemented as municipal building supervisors enter data in the register.

The basis for the calculation of the volume index of newbuilding is to estimate the value of the building started at base year prices by means of the characteristics data of the building and to stratify the estimated value over the expected building period. The estimation of the expected building period is based on a model developed for this purpose. The time of construction and the time of completion are determined on the basis of the estimated imputed construction period and not according to the completion time in the register. This method essentially improves the ability of the volume index to monitor economic cycles. The volume of newbuilding in the examined period is derived by adding up the value shares of all buildings under construction for this period at base year prices. When this value is proportioned to the corresponding value of the corresponding period in the base year, the result is the volume index.

No imputation is connected to the statistics on building and dwelling production.

Data validation

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are validated in several stages during the statistical process. Every new weekly data set is checked to correct erroneous data. The data set is compared with the already published data, and the biggest changes in the already published data are revised. The data are processed monthly separately both at the level of regions and at the level of intended use prior to their release.

Seasonal adjustment

A seasonally unadjusted series and a seasonally adjusted series are published on the volume index of newbuilding. Further information about seasonal adjustment can be found on Statistics Finland's website.

Documentation on methodology

The population of the statistics on building and dwelling production comprises new buildings requiring building permits, extensions and alterations comparable to reconstruction, data on their building stage and new dwelling units located in them. The statistics are based on total data, which are gradually supplemented as municipal building supervisors enter data in the register.

Principles and outlines

Contact organisation

Statistics Finland

Contact organisation unit

Social statistics

Legal acts and other agreements

The compilation of statistics is guided by the Statistics Act. The Statistics Act contains provisions on collection of data, processing of data and the obligation to provide data. Besides the Statistics Act, the Data Protection Act and the Act on the Openness of Government Activities are applied to processing of data when producing statistics. 

Statistics Finland compiles statistics in line with the EU’s regulations applicable to statistics, which steer the statistical agencies of all EU Member States.

The production and data content of the statistics on building and dwelling production are governed by Council Regulation (EC) No 1165/98 concerning short-term statistics and Commission Regulation No 588/2001 as regards the definition of variables.

Further information: Statistical legislation

Confidentiality - policy

The data protection of data collected for statistical purposes is guaranteed in accordance with the requirements of the Statistics Act (280/2004), the Act on the Openness of Government Activities (621/1999), the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (EU) 2016/679 and the Data Protection Act (1050/2018). The data materials are protected at all stages of processing with the necessary physical and technical solutions. Statistics Finland has compiled detailed directions and instructions for confidential processing of the data. Employees have access only to the data essential for their duties. The premises where unit-level data are processed are not accessible to outsiders. Members of the personnel have signed a pledge of secrecy upon entering the service. Violation of data protection is punishable. 

Further information: Data protection | Statistics Finland (stat.fi) 

Confidentiality - data treatment

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are published on the level of the whole country.

Release policy

Statistics Finland publishes new statistical data at 8 am on weekdays in its web service. The release times of statistics are given in advance in the release calendar available in the web service. The data are public after they have been updated in the web service. 

Further information: Publication principles for statistics at Statistics Finland 

Data sharing

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are supplied monthly for use in national accounts. The data of the statistics are submitted monthly to Eurostat on the day of their publication and Eurostat releases the data on its web pages.
 

Other

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production also enable the dissemination of regional data as a chargeable information service. More detailed data on the statistics on building and dwelling production, such as regional data on building projects, can be found in Statistics Finland's chargeable Built environment service.

Accessibility and clarity

Statistical data are published as database tables in the StatFin database. The database is the primary publishing site of data, and new data are updated first there. When releasing statistical data, existing database tables can be updated with new data or completely new database tables can be published.   

In addition to statistical data published in the StatFin database, a release on the key data is usually published in the web service. If the release contains data concerning several reference periods (e.g. monthly and annual data), a review bringing together these data is published in the web service. Database tables updated at the time of publication are listed both in the release and in the review. In some cases, statistical data can also be published as mere database releases in the StatFin database. No release or review is published in connection with these database releases. 

Releases and database tables are published in three languages, in Finnish, Swedish and English. The language versions of releases may have more limited content than in Finnish.   

Information about changes in the publication schedules of releases and database tables and about corrections are given as change releases in the web service.

Micro-data access

Unit-level data of the statistics are used only for producing the statistics and others than producers of statistics do not have access to unit-level data.

Data revision - policy

Revisions – i.e. improvements in the accuracy of statistical data already published – are a normal feature of statistical production and result in improved quality of statistics. The principle is that statistical data are based on the best available data and information concerning the statistical phenomenon. On the other hand, the revisions are communicated as transparently as possible in advance. Advance communication ensures that the users can prepare for the data revisions. 

The reason why data in statistical releases become revised is often caused by the data becoming supplemented. Then the new, revised statistical figure is based on a wider information basis and describes the phenomenon more accurately than before. 

Revisions of statistical data may also be caused by the calculation method used, such as annual benchmarking or updating of weight structures. Changes of base years and used classifications may also cause revisions to data. 

Seasonally adjusted data in statistics on economic trends become revised because of the calculation method used. Additional information on a new time series observation is exploited in model-based calculation methods and this is reflected as changes in previous releases. Revisions of the latest figures to be seasonally adjusted are elaborated on in the releases and quality reports of statistics. 

A summary table of the revisions that have taken place is also published in connection with key statistics on economic trends and some annual statistics. The table shows how the data for the statistical reference periods have changed between the first and the most recent statistical release. 

The data of the statistics on building and dwelling production are based on data reported by municipalities on the construction stages of granted building permits. Data reported by municipalities are accumulated at a delay to the Digital and Population Data Agency. The statistics on building and dwelling production become revised most during approximately 12 months from the first release.

User needs

The data of the statistics are used at Eurostat, in various international organisations and in Finnish public administration to monitor and analyse the development of business services. Business life and research institutes use the data in their market development assessments.

Building production data can be used to examine the state and development of construction in the whole country and by area. The data are particularly suitable for assessing the economic situation. By means of building production data, the examination of economic development can be deepened and defined by focusing on different types of buildings or regional data.

User satisfaction

Eurostat assesses the data of the statistics yearly. The latest grade received by Finland was 9.7.

Quality documentation

The data on building projects are received weekly from the Digital and Population Data Agency. These data include building permits granted and building projects started and completed. Data reported by municipalities on building projects started are accumulated at a delay to the Digital and Population Data Agency. Due to the delay the statistics for the latest month are always based on incomplete data at the time of production. The data of the volume index of newbuilding are never final, because data on starts of building projects subject to building permits are continuously updated. At the beginning of 2015, the Digital and Population Data Agency adopted a permanent building identifier in the entire Population Information System. The data released prior to 2015 are not directly comparable with those released after 2015.

Quality assessment

The quality of the statistics on building and dwelling production is evaluated in several different stages of the statistical process. The unit data of the statistics and data revisions are examined monthly.

Quality assurance

Quality management requires comprehensive guidance of activities. The quality management framework of the field of statistics is the European Statistics Code of Practice (CoP). The frameworks complement each other. The quality criteria of Official Statistics of Finland are also compatible with the European Statistics Code of Practice. 

Further information: Quality management | Statistics Finland (stat.fi) 

Every year Statistics Finland conducts statistical auditing that helps to ensure the quality of statistics.

The statistics on building and dwelling production are official statistics. The Official Statistics of Finland (OSF) are a comprehensive collection of statistics describing the development and state of society. They comprise nearly 300 sets of statistics on 26 different topics. The producers of Official Statistics of Finland have approved a common quality assurance in which they commit to common quality criteria and quality assurance measures. The quality criteria of Official Statistics of Finland are compatible with the European Statistics Code of Practice. The good practices followed in the statistics are presented in Statistics Finland's Quality Guidelines for Official Statistics handbook.

User access

Data are released to all users at the same time. Statistical data may only be handled at Statistics Finland and information on them may be given before release only by persons involved in the production of the statistics concerned or who need the data of the statistics concerned in their own work before the data are published. 

Further information: Publication principles for statistics 

Unless otherwise separately stated in connection with the product, data or service concerned, Statistics Finland is the producer of the data and the owner of the copyright. The terms of use for statistical data.

Statistical experts

Tiia Wallin
Senior Statistician
029 551 3875

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