Almost two million occupied dwellings in Norway
Population;Construction, housing and property
fobbolig, Population and Housing Census, dwellings (discontinued), occupied dwellings, type of building (for example detached house, row house, block of flats), year of construction, type of ownership, size of dwelling, housing standard, accessibility (floor number, elevator)Dwelling and housing conditions , Population and housing censuses , Population, Construction, housing and property

Population and Housing Census, dwellings (discontinued)2001



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The publication from 26 February 2013 has been removed due to errors in the figures. New figures will be published when available (11 June 2013).

Almost two million occupied dwellings in Norway

There were 1 961 548 occupied dwellings in Norway on 3 November 2001. Almost two out of three live in detached houses. The dwellings we live in are more spacious, however as much as four out of five dwellings are not accessible to wheelchair users. There are now more people renting, particularly in the larger cities.

This is illustrated by the figures from the Population and housing census 2001.

The number of occupied dwellings in Norway has increased by 12 per cent since 1990. 57 per cent of the housing stock comprises detached houses and 18 per cent are dwellings in flats or blocks of flats. Whereas only 12 per cent of the housing stock in Oslo are detached houses, the proportion in Sigdal municipality in Buskerud is as much as 96 per cent. We find the highest proportion of blocks of flats in Oslo where almost 70 per cent of the housing stock are flats or blocks of flats.

More spacious

Throughout the post-war period, dwellings have become more spacious. In 1950 there were 3.4 residents per dwelling. In 1990, the figure was 2.4 and in 2001 2.3. Average number of rooms per dwelling has increased from 3.6 in 1980 to 4.1 in 2001. There are fewer persons per dwelling in 2001 than ever before and dwellings now have more rooms in average.

More people renting in the cities

About 23 per cent of the households in Norway rent the dwelling in which they live. This proportion has increased in all counties apart from the four northernmost. The increase in the proportion renting is greatest in the large cities. Almost 30 per cent of households in Oslo rent their dwelling. The corresponding figure in 1990 was 24 per cent.

Number of dwellings. 1920-2001. Million

Younger persons have more difficulty in the housing market

Younger households (by oldest person in the household) own to a lesser degree than older households. This difference has been accentuated in the 1990s. The figures show that the proportion has dropped particularly for households with the oldest person under 45. This is most evident in the large cities that have greatest pressure in the housing market.

The majority own their dwelling in Akershus, however Oslo has the highest proportion of housing co-operative owners

We find the highest proportion of ”house owners” in Akershus, followed closely by Telemark and the municipalities in Southwest Norway. The proportion owning among municipalities is highest in Frei in Møre-og Romsdal and Siljan in Telemark with 87 per cent.

Over 70 per cent of households in Oslo own their dwelling. 36 per cent are owner-occupier and 35 per cent own through housing co-operatives or limited companies. The proportion owning through housing co-operatives or limited companies is the highest in the country. Skedsmo follows closely with a proportion of 33 per cent. In Oslo, some parts of town have a very high proportion owning through housing co-operatives or limited companies. Romsås and Lamberseter have the highest proportions, 80 and 76 per cent respectively.

Lone parents rent dwellings

Half of the households comprising mother or father with small children rent the dwelling in which they live. A high proportion of persons living alone also rents their dwelling. The majority from all household types rent from private persons. However among persons living alone, there is a significant proportion renting from the municipality. This is related to the fact that many elderly persons live alone and many rent municipal local authority housing for pensioners, particularly among those above 80 years.

Among what may be referred to as established households (couples with children above 7 years), more than 90 per cent own their dwelling. The majority of these are owner-occupiers. It is most common for persons living alone and mother/father with older children to live in housing co-operative flats. One out of five of these household types own their dwelling through a housing co-operative.

Four out of five dwellings inaccessible to wheelchair users

The Population and housing census 2001 is the first census in which questions are asked about whether a wheelchair user can enter the dwelling without help and use all main rooms in the dwelling. The results show that 17 per cent of dwellings are accessible to persons using wheelchairs. However not all dwellings accessible to wheelchair users are considered to be suitable dwellings for a wheelchair user. Only 7 per cent of all dwellings are both accessible and suitable dwellings for a wheelchair user. A dwelling is suitable for a wheelchair user when the person concerned can use the bathroom, toilet, one bedroom, kitchen and living room.

Dwellings adapted for wheelchair users may help the elderly to live longer in their own dwellings. 22 per cent of all residents who are 80 years or above live in a dwelling accessible to a wheelchair user. 14 per cent of these can also use all vital rooms from a wheelchair.

One out of four live in buildings with three or more floors

About a quarter of the households live in buildings with three or more floors. 18 per cent of all households live in such ”high-rises” without elevators. It is mostly younger households without children that live in such buildings. However, even among households where the oldest person is 80 years or more, 14 per cent live in high-rise buildings without elevators. It is worth noting that this does not necessarily mean the dwellings are difficult to access since we do not have information about the floor where the individual household lives.

Aust Agder has the oldest housing stock

Almost half of all current dwellings are built after 1970. About 6 per cent of dwellings are built in 1900 or earlier. The county of Aust Agder has the oldest housing stock in the country. 14 per cent of the dwellings are built before 1901. Tvedestrand is the municipality with the oldest housing stock with 23 per cent of dwellings built before 1901. Risør and Kragerø also have an old housing stock with about 20 per cent built before 1901. On the other hand we find Ullensaker and Kautokeino with 28 per cent of dwellings built during the last decade.

Most dwellings have more than one heating system

Norwegian houses have traditionally had several systems for heating. Almost 70 per cent of dwellings have two or more ways of heating. In most dwellings, electric heaters are one of several heating systems used. In newer dwellings, it is increasingly common to choose one heating system. Almost half of all dwellings built after 1990 are equipped with only one heating system.

Electricity is the most important source of heating

It is clear that electricity is the most widely used source of energy for heating. As much as 93 per cent of households in Norway respond that they use electricity for heating. 60 per cent responded that they use solid fuel and 21 per cent use liquid fuel. Only 2 per cent use other sources for heating. There are great regional variations. Oslo has the lowest proportion using electricity (83 per cent) while Rogaland has the highest (98 per cent). The proportion using solid fuel is greatest in Nord Trøndelag with almost 80 per cent while Oslo has the lowest proportion, 26 per cent. In certain municipalities the proportion using solid fuel is almost 95 per cent (Audnedal in Vest Agder and Beiarn in Sør Trøndelag). Use of liquid fuel as a source of heating is most common in Buskerud and Hedmark (30 per cent).

Lowest proportion with cars in the cities and Finnmark

The proportion of households that have cars is lowest in the island and coastal municipalities, particularly Finnmark and the largest county boroughs. Whereas only half of the households in Oslo have a private car, the corresponding figure for the country as a whole is 70 per cent. There are great variations within the county boroughs. In the inner, eastern parts of Oslo, about 30 per cent of households have cars, whereas Vinderen has the highest proportion of 70 per cent, the national average. In Bergen and Trondheim as well, the central town parts have the lowest proportions.

Parking space problems in Oslo

About 90 per cent of households with cars have access to their own garage (including carports) or own parking space. In Oslo, only 70 per cent of households with cars have a garage or parking space. In inner cities, this figure is about 30 per cent. The proportion in Finnmark with a garage is not higher than in Oslo, while not surprisingly, access to parking space is much higher than in the capital.