Build Europe Calls on New European Parliament to Make Housing Affordability a Top Priority

Build Europe, the leading association representing European developers and homebuilders, concluded its annual Congress by expressing its hope that housing affordability will be a priority for the next European Parliament.

The Congress of Build Europe provided a platform for national housing federations to address the impact of recent EU legislation, including the Energy Efficiency of Buildings Directive, on the ongoing housing crisis. Members had also the opportunity to share insights on the housing and construction sectors within each Member State, but also to explore potential opportunities deriving from EU initiatives, such as the EU Taxonomy, which could stimulate investments in sustainable residential projects. However, all participants agreed that the future of the sector is worrying, with housing production declining throughout Europe, leaving millions without access to decent housing at affordable costs.

All housing federations agree that the housing crisis is a complex phenomenon, but stressed that its underlying causes offer a universal context for developing effective, country-specific solutions:

  1. Insufficient supply despite growing population;
  2. Prohibitive construction costs driven by over-regulation, rising prices for materials and labour, inflation, and high interest rates;
  3. A shortage of affordable building land, which makes it more expensive;
  4. Heavy taxation on housing, often throughout its lifetime, coupled with administrative burdens.

The European housing federations, nevertheless, were glad that Members of the European Parliament recently acknowledge the importance of addressing the housing crisis, and welcomed a new report authored by former Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta for the Council of the EU, advocating for the establishment of an EU task force on housing affordability. This group would collect data on various EU cities and national housing markets and facilitate the exchange of best practices to tackle the housing crisis. In this case, Build Europe would be ideally positioned to contribute its insights.

Andreas Ibel, President of Build Europe, declared: „European crises demand European solutions. Housing has often not been considered a major issue by the EU institutions, but it's crucial for the well-being of people across Europe. Like how the EU came together to handle the Covid-19 pandemic, it's time to confront the housing crisis directly. We encourage the new European Parliament and the rest of Europe to focus on reducing regulatory obstacles and creating an environment that supports more housing development”.

Filiep Loosveldt, Managing Director of Build Europe, said: „The urgency of the housing affordability crisis cannot be overstated. European political parties have rightly emphasised this issue during the electoral campaign, but words must translate into action. Housing is not just about shelter; it's about creating spaces for families for living, family time, social gatherings, studying, and working”.

About Build Europe


Build Europe is the organisation representing in the European Union the national federations of developers and homebuilders of 18 states.

Build Europe considers accessibility to decent affordable housing solutions that meet the European citizens’ needs and expectations to be one of the main challenges that needs to be addressed by the European institutions. For this reason, Build Europe believes that the EU, Member States, and other European nations must ensure that the EU's environmental objectives do not further exacerbate the current housing affordability crisis.

In 2019, in view of the European elections, Build Europe published a Manifesto on the housing crisis, with the ambition to provide the European institutions with a set of practical and feasible solutions. In 2020, we also provided the European Commission with „Housing: A European Challenge”, an action plan developed on the basis of the lessons learned during the Covid-19 pandemic, aimed at relaunching the European economy while still addressing the housing affordability crisis in a time where house was at the center of EU families’ concerns. In 2022, Build Europe also published „No Net Land Take by 2050 – Solving the Unsolvable“, a booklet designed to help policy makers pursue a policy of land preservation while protecting European citizens from rising housing costs, and a comic book designed to explain in a simple way the structural reasons behind the phenomenon of unaffordable housing.

In 2024, Build Europe published its new Manifesto on housing affordability.