'Dwelling occupancy status' is the variable that classifies all dwellings according to whether they were occupied or not, and why they were unoccupied on the date of the census.
For the census, a dwelling is defined as occupied if it is:
- occupied at midnight on the night of the census, or
- occupied at any time during the 12 hours following midnight on the night of the census, unless the occupant(s) completed questionnaire at another dwelling during this period.
The count of occupied dwellings is made up of private occupied dwellings (such as houses, flats and apartments) and non-private occupied dwellings (such as hotels and hospitals).
A dwelling is defined as unoccupied if it is:
- unoccupied at all times during the 12 hours following midnight on the night of the census, and
- suitable for habitation.
'Dwellings under construction' includes all houses, flats, groups or blocks of flats being built.
Relationship to questionnaire(s)
Dwelling occupancy status data is derived from the count of all dwelling forms received and substitute forms created, plus the count of unoccupied dwellings and dwellings under construction, as enumerated by the census collector during the census collection phase.
Substitute dwelling forms are dwelling forms created by Statistics New Zealand where there was sufficient evidence that a dwelling was occupied but Statistics New Zealand had no corresponding dwelling form. Substitute forms are created to ensure every person and every dwelling is counted in the census.
Dwelling form (PDF 783kb).
The subject population is the people, families, households or dwellings to whom the variable applies.
The subject population for this variable is all dwellings.
There is no non-response rate for dwelling occupancy status as it is a count of dwelling forms plus unoccupied dwellings and dwellings under construction, as determined by the census collector during the census collection phase.
Quality Management Strategy priority level
The overall count of dwellings is a foremost variable. Unoccupied dwellings and dwellings under construction are defining variables.
The Census Quality Management Strategy assigns a priority level to all census variables.
Foremost variables are core census variables that have the highest priority in terms of quality, time and resources across all phases of the 2006 Census. Defining variables cover key subject populations that are important for policy development, evaluation or monitoring. These variables are given secondary priority in terms of quality, time and resources across all phases of the 2006 Census.
All data must meet minimum quality standards in order to make it suitable for use.
Comparability with 1996 and 2001 Census data
There are no issues affecting the comparability of this data with 1996 and 2001 Census data.
The count of occupied dwellings for the 2006 Census has been affected by some difficulties in enumerating high-rise apartments and a variety of factors that are believed to have resulted in a lower count of non-private occupied dwellings than in 2001.
During the distribution of census forms, it was standard procedure for collectors to classify unoccupied dwellings as either empty or as 'residents away'. For a significant proportion of apartments in high-rise blocks, it was not possible to determine whether apartments that appeared unoccupied were actually empty, the residents were away, or they were really occupied. Several hundred dwellings were affected by this problem.
Further research was undertaken after the census to ensure the classifications were as accurate as possible. As a result, a certain proportion of the dwellings in these buildings were classified as occupied, a certain proportion were classified as unoccupied and empty, and a certain proportion were classified as unoccupied with residents away. The proportional split used was:
- occupied – 30 percent
- unoccupied and empty – 52 percent
- unoccupied with residents away – 18 percent.
The lower count of non-private occupied dwellings is believed to be due to various factors, including different enumeration procedures in the 2001 and 2006 Censuses, definitional changes, real world change (ie reduced numbers of certain types of non-private dwellings) and real world factors (eg bad weather closing camping grounds).
Other things to be aware of
There are no other issues that users should be aware of.