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Income, consumption, living conditions


Private households and official statistical agencies working together

Haushalte Heute

Dear Microcensus participant,

First of all, we would like to thank you very much for your participation in the microcensus, which has now ended for you. Unfortunately, the microcensus cannot cover all important and up-to-date topics.That is why we would like to present HOUSEHOLDS TODAY to you and ask you for your co-operation.


  • HOUSEHOLDS TODAY is based on voluntary co-operation between private households and official statistical agencies.
  • Getting involved in HOUSEHOLDS TODAY will give you the opportunity to participate in official statistical surveys from time to time.
  • The co-operation carries no obligation on your side and can be terminated by you at any time.

What kind of surveys are conducted as part of HOUSEHOLDS TODAY?

Internet use by individuals and age groupEnlarge picture
  • The surveys that are conducted collect information on the living conditions of households in Germany. They examine, for instance, the housing conditions, financial situation, educational level and employment status of households, or their approach to and use of PCs and the internet.

  • In the past years, participants of HOUSEHOLDS TODAY were questioned for the following surveys: „EU-SILC (Leben in Europa)“, „Information and Communication Technology Usage“ and „Births in Germany“. The chart on internet usage provides an example of the range of interesting and important information obtained from the surveys.

What is the benefit of HOUSEHOLDS TODAY?

  • The data collected by the surveys provide an up-todate picture of the living conditions in Germany, of the income situation, or of the access to information and communicationtechnologies. These results are of great benefit to politics, the society, science and research.
  • Your participation in HOUSEHOLDS TODAY will help us to collect timely data in a cost-saving manner and you will contribute to providing the general public with up-to-date information.

What does participation in HOUSEHOLDS TODAY mean for you?

  • If your household participates in HOUSEHOLDS TODAY we will store some basic data on thehousehold members from the last microcensus interview in a database (for instance, on the marital status and the composition of your household). To this end, every adult household member will be required to sign a declaration of consent.
  • Some official statistical surveys are based on a systematic random selection of households. If your household is selected for a specific survey, you will be notified and provided with information on the survey.Participation in the survey is voluntary, you are under no obligation to respond.
  • The topics of the questions and the length of the questionnaires vary. Some individual surveys are conducted over several consecutive years to examine changes, while other surveys are taken only once. Due to the random selection of households, it is possible that your household will not be requested to participate in a survey for a long time. If that is the case and your household is not selected for any survey for a whole year, we will send you a short questionnaire for you to fill in so that we can update your data in the HOUSEHOLDS TODAY database.
  • In most cases, you will receive a small monetary compensation for your participation in the surveys.

How do we protect your personal data?

  • We strictly comply with the data protection rules, under which the staff members of the Statistical Offices and the interviewers are obliged to maintain statistical secrecy. The names, addresses and telephone numbers (and e-mail addresses, where provided) of households and individuals are never passed on to third parties. They are exclusively used to conduct the surveys undertaken as part of HOUSEHOLDS TODAY.
  • Under no circumstances will the results of the surveys contain personal information such as names or addresses. This means: By looking at the results, no one will be able to find out who provided the data.
  • If at any time you wish to stop participating in the surveys, simply send a short message to the responsible Land Statistical Office. The data we have stored to identify you will then be deleted and your household will not be contacted again.

Do you have more questions?


© Statistisches Bundesamt (Destatis), 2017

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