This is a case study for Principle Q3: Assured quality.

The Consumer Price Index including Owner Occupiers’ Housing Costs (CPIH) is published monthly by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) in its UK Consumer Price Inflation bulletin.

ONS publishes information about the quality of the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) private rents data, which are used to estimate owner occupiers’ housing costs, a key component of the inflation measure:

ONS communicates clearly with VOA to understand the quality assurance of these data. ONS is currently looking into gaining access to the private rents microdata, using the powers granted through the Digital Economy Act 2017. This is expected to help ONS further understand data quality issues.

In addition, ONS has developed several comparative analyses to provide assurance to itself and to users about the behaviour of CPIH:

  • One analysis compared different methods of estimating owner occupiers’ housing (OOH) costs
  • Another analysis compared the CPIH private rents data with other data source

By publishing clear and detailed information about data quality assurance and embedding quality assurance practices in its production process, ONS provides reassurances to itself and users about the quality of the data used to produce CPIH.