Data Dictionary: ACS 2005 -- 2009 (5-Year Estimates)
you are here: choose a survey survey data set table details
Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Table: B99259. Imputation Of Plumbing Facilities [3]
Universe: Housing units
Table Details
B99259. Imputation Of Plumbing Facilities
Universe: Housing units
Variable Label
B99259001
B99259002
B99259003
Relevant Documentation:
Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey 2005-2009 Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Imputation Rates
Missing data for a particular question or item is called item nonresponse. It occurs when a respondent fails to provide an answer to a required item. The ACS also considers invalid answers as item nonresponse. The Census Bureau uses imputation methods that either use rules to determine acceptable answers or use answers from similar housing units or people who provided the item information. One type of imputation, allocation, involves using statistical procedures, such as within-household or nearest neighbor matrices populated by donors, to impute for missing values.

Overall Person Characteristic Imputation Rate
This rate is calculated by adding together the weighted number of allocated items across a set of person characteristics, and dividing by the total weighted number of responses across the same set of characteristics.

Overall Housing Characteristic Imputation Rate
This rate is calculated by adding together the weighted number of allocated items across a set of household and housing unit characteristics, and dividing by the total weighted number of responses across the same set of characteristics. These rates give an overall picture of the rate of item nonresponse for a geographic area.

Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey 2005-2009 Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Plumbing Facilities
The data on plumbing facilities were obtained from Housing Question 8 a, b, and c in the 2009 American Community Survey. The question was asked at both occupied and vacant housing units. Complete plumbing facilities include: (a) hot and cold running water, (b) a flush toilet, and (c) a bathtub or shower. All three facilities must be located inside the house, apartment, or mobile home, but not necessarily in the same room. Housing units are classified as lacking complete plumbing facilities when any of the three facilities is not present.

Plumbing facilities provide an indication of living standards and assess the quality of household facilities within the housing inventory. These data provide assistance in the assessment of water resources and to serve as an aid to identify possible areas of ground water contamination. The data also are used to forecast the need for additional water and sewage facilities, aid in the development of policies based on fair market rent, and to identify areas in need of rehabilitation loans or grants.

Question/Concept History
The 1996-2007 American Community Survey questions were stand-alone questions that asked the respondent to answer either "Yes, has all three facilities" or "No" to the question of whether the housing unit had complete plumbing facilities, requiring that the facilities all be in the same unit. Starting in 2008, the structure of the question changed and combined plumbing facilities with kitchen facilities and telephone service availability into one question to ask, "Does this house, apartment, or mobile home have -" and provided the respondent with a "Yes" or "No" checkbox for each component needed for complete facilities. An additional change introduced in 2008 included changing the description of the component "hot and cold piped water to hot and cold running water."

Comparability
Caution should be used when comparing American Community Survey data on plumbing facilities from the years 2008 and after with both pre-2008 ACS and Census 2000 data. Changes made to the plumbing facilities question between the 2007 and 2008 ACS involving the wording, the response option, and translation to the Spanish questionnaire resulted in an inconsistency in the ACS data. This inconsistency in the data was most noticeable as an increase in housing units "lacking complete plumbing facilities."