Norway House Prices
For Norway we can go back to the early 19th century to explore how house prices have behaved. In 1819 its one million people mainly spent their time farming the land or fishing the seas. Yet over the following 190 years the population grew to around two million by 1900 and has now grown to nearly five million. In some ways it is still a quiet and humble country, but over the period in question it has industrialized and emerged as one of the richest countries in the world, in large part thanks to its discovery of oil in the 1970s.
We are fortunate that the Norwegian economists Øyvind Eitrheim and Solveig Erlandsen, bemoaning the lack of historical data on Norwegian house prices going back any further than 1980, have been motivated to construct an index that covers nearly two hundred years of prices in four Norwegian cities: Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Kristiansand. For each individual city they used data from property registers to compare how much the same house is sold for over time. To compare prices across Norway, Eitrheim and Erlandsen use the hedonic method to factor in the difference between locations.
Safe as Houses? explores the changing fortunes of Norway and how that fed through to house prices.
Eitrheim and Erlandsen data for Norwegin house prices for 1819–2003 is from Eitrheim, Ø., and Erlandsen, S. K. (2004), House price indices for Norway 1819–2003, Norges Bank Occasional Paper 35, chapter 9) and can be found at:
The same link takes you to Grytten’s inflation data for 1819– 2003 in Grytten, O. (2004), A consumer price index for Norway 1516–2003, Norges Bank Occasional Paper 35, chapter 3)
Recent information about house price data and CPI data for 2004–2010 is from Statistics Norway (www.ssb.no).