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Sector of landlord


Sector of landlord refers to the type of organisation or person from whom households rent or lease private occupied dwellings. It can be the private sector (private person, trust, or business) or the state sector (Housing New Zealand Corporation, local authority or city council, or other state-owned corporation or state-owned enterprise, or government department or ministry).

A rented private dwelling is a dwelling that is not owned by the usual resident(s) and for which the usual resident(s) make rent payments.

A leased private dwelling is a rented dwelling for which the owner has granted another person or group of people exclusive possession for an agreed time period.

Where the data comes from

Question 10 on the dwelling form.

How this data is classified

11 Private person, trust or business

21 Local authority or city council

31 Housing New Zealand Corporation

32 Other state-owned corporation or state-owned enterprise or government department or ministry

44 Don't know

77 Response unidentifiable

99 Not stated

For further information about this classification, refer to the 2013 Census data dictionary.

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 the households in rented private occupied dwellings, ie households that do not own their home or have it in a family trust and who are paying rent.

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

Data for weekly rent paid

  • To obtain the correct data for weekly rent paid, it is necessary to select only those households that were renting, which means those households that were in the tenure of household category called 'Dwelling not owned and not held in a family trust, rent payments made'. Otherwise the data that is produced will include other households that were not renting their home, and will be incorrect.

Non-response and data that could not be classified


'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 rate for 2013: 1.0 percent.
  • Non-response rate for 2006: 1.1 percent.
  • Non-response rate for 2001: 1.8 percent.

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'.

  • 6.3 percent of the subject population was coded to 'Not elsewhere included' in 2013, compared with 5.7 percent in 2006 and 5.9 percent in 2001. These figures include 'Response unidentifiable' and responses of 'Don't know'.

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

How this data is used

Data from this variable is used to:

  • formulate and monitor housing policy 
  • assess market dominance in rental housing
  • measure shifts in the approach taken by government to housing assistance, and study the consequences of change
  • enable Housing New Zealand to assess whether it is meeting its social objectives as required by law
  • analyse the characteristics of households renting through different landlords.

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.

Sector of landlord is a defining variable. Defining variables cover key subject populations that are important for policy development, evaluation, or monitoring. These variables are given second priority in terms of quality, time, and resources across all phases of a census.

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:

  • The online form allowed only one response to be selected for the sector of landlord question. If a further response was selected, the response given previously disappeared. Multiple responses to this question were possible when forms were completed on paper.
  • If the respondent answered 'Yes' to owning or partly owning the dwelling, the sector of landlord question was greyed out on the online form and could not be answered. When forms were filled in on paper, it was possible for the respondent to miss the routing and answer the sector of landlord question after ticking 'Yes' to owning or partly owning the dwelling.

Quality assessment of data and data quality issues for this variable

Overall quality assessment

High: fit for use – with minor data quality issues only; except for data about Housing New Zealand Corporation properties, which is Moderate: fit for use – with some data quality issues to be aware of.

Issues to note

  • Non-response rate for 2013: 1.0 percent.
  • While sector of landlord information is generally of high quality, there is a considerable undercount of Housing New Zealand Corporation properties in census data. In 2013 this undercount was estimated to be approximately 18 percent compared with an estimated 25 percent in 2006, and approximately 15 percent in 2001. It is not possible to give exact figures, as some tenants could have been absent on census night.

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

Comparing this data with previous census data

This data is highly comparable with the 2006 Census data. 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. There have been some improvements to overall data quality for 2013, and the undercount of households renting from Housing New Zealand is estimated to be lower for 2013 than for 2006. It was estimated at around 25 percent for 2006.

This data is broadly comparable with the 2001 Census data. Changes in the data over this time period may be partly due to changes in the collection, definition, or classification of the data rather than to real change. A different classification was used in 2001 which had separate categories for private person, trust, and business. Aggregating these three categories of the 2001 data together allows the 2001 data to be compared with 2006 and 2013 data. The undercount of households renting from Housing New Zealand is believed to be lower in 2001 (estimated at 15 percent).

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.

Further information about this data

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

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

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