Data Dictionary: ACS 2011 (1-Year Estimates)
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Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Universe: Universe: Renter-occupied housing units
Variable Details
C25074. Household Income By Gross Rent As A Percentage Of Household Income In The Past 12 Months
Universe: Universe: Renter-occupied housing units
C25074006 $10,000 To $19,999
Aggregation method:
Addition
Relevant Documentation:
Income of Households
This includes the income of the householder and all other individuals 15 years old and over in the household, whether they are related to the householder or not. Because many households consist of only one person, average household income is usually less than average family income. Although the household income statistics cover the past 12 months, the characteristics of individuals and the composition of households refer to the time of interview. Thus, the income of the household does not include amounts received by individuals who were members of the household during all or part of the past 12 months if these individuals no longer resided in the household at the time of interview. Similarly, income amounts reported by individuals who did not reside in the household during the past 12 months but who were members of the household at the time of interview are included. However, the composition of most households was the same during the past 12 months as at the time of interview.

Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey 2011 Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Gross Rent as a Percentage of Household Income
Gross rent as a percentage of household income is a computed ratio of monthly gross rent to monthly household income (total household income divided by 12). The ratio is computed separately for each unit and is rounded to the nearest tenth. Units for which no rent is paid and units occupied by households that reported no income or a net loss comprise the category, "Not computed."

Gross rent as a percentage of household income provides information on the monthly housing cost expenses for renters. The information offers an excellent measure of housing affordability and excessive shelter costs. The data also serve to aid in the development of housing programs to meet the needs of people at different economic levels, and to provide assistance to agencies in determining policies on fair rent.
Median Gross Rent as a Percentage of Household Income
This measure divides the gross rent as a percentage of household income distribution into two equal parts: one-half of the cases falling below the median gross rent as a percentage of household income and one-half above the median. Median gross rent as a percentage of household income is computed on the basis of a standard distribution. (See the "Standard Distributions" section under "Appendix A.") Median gross rent as a percentage of household income is rounded to the nearest tenth. (For more information on medians, see "Derived Measures.")
Comparability
Data on gross rent as a percentage of household income in the American Community Survey should not be compared to Census 2000 gross rent as a percentage of household income data. For Census 2000, tables were not released for total renter-occupied units. The universe in Census 2000 was "specified renter-occupied housing units" whereas the universe in the ACS is "renter occupied housing units," thus comparisons cannot be made between these two data sets.