Stats NZ has a new website.

For new releases go to

www.stats.govt.nz

As we transition to our new site, you'll still find some Stats NZ information here on this archive site.

  • Share this page to Facebook
  • Share this page to Twitter
  • Share this page to Google+
Number of rooms and number of bedrooms

Definition

A room is defined as a space in a dwelling that is used, or intended to be used, for habitation and is enclosed by walls reaching from the floor to the ceiling or roof covering, excluding service areas.

The number of rooms includes each attic, bedroom, dining room, games room, habitable cellar, hobby room, kitchen, living room, lounge room, studio, and study. Service areas such as bathrooms, corridors, garages, hallways, laundries, pantries, spa rooms, toilets, verandas, and walk-in wardrobes should not be counted as rooms. If a dwelling is built in an open-plan style, then room equivalents are counted as if they had walls between them. Room equivalents do not apply for a one-roomed dwelling: for example, a bed-sitting room is counted as one room only.

A bedroom is defined as a room that is used, or intended to be used, for sleeping in.

  • A room furnished as a bedroom should include a sleeping facility such as a bed or mattress, and could include items such as a dresser or chest of drawers. It is counted as a bedroom, even if it is not being used on census night.
  • A one-roomed dwelling (eg a bed-sitting room) is counted as having one bedroom and therefore one total room.
  • A sleep-out adjacent to a private dwelling should be counted if it is furnished as a bedroom and, if used, is used by members of the same household as those in the dwelling.
  • A caravan adjacent to a private dwelling should be counted only if it is used as a bedroom by members of the same household as those living in the dwelling.
  • Another room (such as a living room) that is used as a bedroom at night, either short-term or long-term, should only be counted as a bedroom if there are no bedroom facilities elsewhere in the dwelling.

Where the data comes from

Number of rooms – question 15 on the dwelling form.

Number of bedrooms – question 14 on the dwelling form.

How this data is classified

Number of rooms

01 One room

02 Two rooms

03 Three rooms

04 Four rooms

05 Five rooms

06 Six rooms

07 Seven rooms

08 Eight rooms

09 Nine rooms

10 Ten rooms

11 Eleven rooms

12 Twelve rooms

13 Thirteen rooms

14 Fourteen rooms

15 Fifteen rooms

16 Sixteen rooms

17 Seventeen rooms

18 Eighteen rooms

19 Nineteen rooms

20 Twenty or more rooms

77 Response unidentifiable

99 Not stated

Number of bedrooms

01 One bedroom

02 Two bedrooms

03 Three bedrooms

04 Four bedrooms

05 Five bedrooms

06 Six bedrooms

07 Seven bedrooms

08 Eight bedrooms

09 Nine bedrooms

10 Ten bedrooms

11 Eleven bedrooms

12 Twelve bedrooms

13 Thirteen bedrooms

14 Fourteen or more bedrooms

77 Response Unidentifiable

99 Not stated

Information on the number of other rooms (ie all types of rooms except bedrooms) is also available.

For further information about this classification, refer to the:

For background information on classifications and standards, refer to the Classifications and related statistical standards page.

Subject population

The subject population for this variable is private occupied dwellings.

The subject population is the people, families, households, or dwellings to whom the variable applies.

Non-response and data that could not be classified

Non-response

'Non-response' is when an individual gives no response at all to a census question that was relevant to them. The non-response rate is the percentage of the subject population that was coded to ‘Not stated’.

Non-response rates for 2013:

  • Number of rooms: 5.8 percent, of which 4.0 percent were substitute records.
  • Number of bedrooms: 5.1 percent, of which 4.0 percent were substitute records.

Non-response rates for 2006:

  • Number of rooms: 5.1 percent, of which 2.9 percent were substitute records.
  • Number of bedrooms: 4.4 percent, of which 2.9 percent were substitute records.

Non-response rates for 2001:

  • Number of rooms: 4.3 percent. There were no substitute records.
  • Number of bedrooms: 4.2 percent. There were no substitute records.

Not elsewhere included

Non-response and responses that could not be classified or did not provide the type of information asked for are usually grouped together and called 'Not elsewhere included'.

  • For number of rooms, 5.8 percent of the subject population was coded to 'Not elsewhere included' in 2013, compared with 5.1 percent in 2006 and 4.6 percent in 2001.
  • For number of bedrooms, 5.1 percent of the subject population was coded to 'Not elsewhere included' in 2013, compared with 4.5 percent in 2006 and 4.4 percent in 2001.

For more information on non-response and substitute records, refer to the 2013 Census data user guide.

How this data is used

Data from this variable is used to:

  • give some indication of the size of a dwelling
  • give information on changing housing occupancy patterns over time and between various socio-economic groups
  • estimate future demand for housing
  • help create the New Zealand Deprivation Index, in conjunction with other census variables (Otago University and the Ministry of Health)
  • derive household crowding measures.

The household crowding measure derived from this data is also used to help calculate socio-economic decile ratings for schools, which are used to allocate funding by the Ministry of Education.

Data quality processes

All census data was checked thoroughly during processing and evaluation, to ensure that it met quality standards and is suitable for use. These quality checks included edits.

All data must meet minimum quality standards to make it suitable for use.

Quality level

quality level is assigned to all census variables: foremost, defining, or supplementary.

Number of rooms and number of bedrooms are supplementary variables. Supplementary variables do not fit in directly with the main purpose of a census, but are still important to certain groups. These variables are given third priority in terms of effort and resources.

Mode of collection impacts – online form compared with paper form

The online forms had built-in editing functionality that directed respondents to the appropriate questions and ensured that their responses were valid. As a result of this, data from online forms may be of higher overall quality than data from paper forms. The significance of this will depend on the particular type of analysis being done. There will always be a mode effect but this cannot be measured. Statistics NZ design and test to minimise the effects of mode for all questions.

There were differences between how the forms were completed online and on paper for this variable:

  • On the online form, non-numeric answers, negative numbers, or responses greater than 99 were not possible. On the paper form, it was possible for a respondent to give a non-numeric answer, a negative number, or a number greater than 99, even though the space provided only allowed for a one- or two-digit answer.

Quality assessment of data and data quality issues for this variable

Overall quality assessment

High: fit for use – with minor data quality issues only. 2013 Census variable quality rating scale gives more detail.

Issues to note

Non-response rates for 2013:

  • Number of rooms: 5.8 percent, of which 4.0 percent were substitute records.
  • Number of bedrooms: 5.1 percent, of which 4.0 percent were substitute records.

For more information on non-response and substitute records, refer to the 2013 Census data user guide.

Comparing this data with previous census data

This data is highly comparable with data from the 2006 and 2001 Censuses. Changes in the data over this time period can generally be interpreted as real changes. There may be a small component of change over time that is due to minor changes in the collection, definition, or classification of the data.

Improvements to data quality have been made for 2013 and there have been some changes to the questions and guide notes since 2001. In 2001, the rooms and bedrooms questions had slightly different wording ('How many' instead of 'Print number of ...') and the instruction about counting open-plan rooms did not say how to count a kitchen-dining space. An instruction about how to count a kitchen-dining space was included in the 2006 and 2013 questions.

The guide notes for 2001 about whether to count lounges as bedrooms if people sleep in them were worded differently. The wording used in 2001 mentioned other rooms that might be used for sleeping in (‘If your lounge (or dining room, etc) is used as a bedroom...’) but the wording used in 2006 and 2013 referred to lounges only.

Comparing this data with data from other sources

Census is the only information source that provides comprehensive information for small areas and small populations. However alternative sources of information about this subject are available:

Data from these alternative sources may show differences from census data for several reasons. These could be due to differences in scope, coverage, non-response rates, data being collected at different periods of time, alternative sources being sample surveys and as such subject to sampling errors, or differences in question wordings and method of delivery (self-administered versus interviewer-administered). Data users are advised to familiarise themselves with the strengths and limitations of individual data sources before comparing with census data.

The NZGSS only collects data on the number of bedrooms, not rooms.

Further information about this data

All percentages in census publications have been calculated using 'Total stated' as the denominator.

When using this data, be aware of the following:

  • A top category of eight or more rooms or bedrooms is commonly used for tables where these variables are cross-tabulated with other variables.

Contact our Information Centre for further information about using this variable.

  • Share this page to Facebook
  • Share this page to Twitter
  • Share this page to Google+
Top
  • Share this page to Facebook
  • Share this page to Twitter
  • Share this page to Google+