- Written by Yannis Bassiakos, George Labrinidis, Costas Passas
The purpose of the present work is to present the basket of use values related to the satisfaction of the necessary domicile and the housing relating needs of households located in the Metropolitan Athens area. The main methodological vehicle is the full enumeration of needs related to housing and the calculation of the corresponding costs. These needs are described through field research conducted mainly through open interviews and are explicitly priced in detail using data collected via sampling, and are grouped in categories such as rent, taxes, and utilities. In this manner it is possible to derive actual costs and move towards a definition of a poverty line based on actual income and not relative to the overall income distribution. The research on accommodation expenses is part of a larger research effort to study absolute poverty from a radical perspective, thus overcoming the limits of the existing measuring methods. This larger research aims mainly at the construction of a basket of use-values, which satisfy contemporarily and socially defined needs. Within that perspective, expenses for housing constitute an important portion of needs and thus are a critical element for the estimation of the poverty line. Additionally, this line of research could be taken under consideration by the people who are involved in the design of housing policy.
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