Data Dictionary: Census 1990
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Survey: Census 1990
Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Table: H32. Vacant Bedrooms [7]
Universe: Vacant housing units
Table Details
H32. Vacant Bedrooms
Universe: Vacant housing units
Variable Label
H032_001
H032_002
H032_003
H032_004
H032_005
H032_006
H032_007
Relevant Documentation:
Excerpt from: Social Explorer, U.S. Census Bureau; Census of Population and Housing, 1990: Summary Tape File 3 on CD-ROM [machine-readable data files] / prepared by the Bureau of the Census. Washington: The Bureau [producer and distributor], 1991.
 
Vacant Housing Units
A housing unit is vacant if no one is living in it at the time of enumeration, unless its occupants are only temporarily absent. Units temporarily occupied at the time of enumeration entirely by persons who have a usual residence elsewhere also are classified as vacant. (For more information, see discussion under "Usual Home Elsewhere.")

New units not yet occupied are classified as vacant housing units if construction has reached a point where all exterior windows and doors are installed and final usable floors are in place. Vacant units are excluded if they are open to the elements; that is, the roof, walls, windows, and/or doors no longer protect the interior from the elements, or if there is positive evidence (such as a sign on the house or in the block) that the unit is condemned or is to be demolished. Also excluded are quarters being used entirely for nonresidential purposes, such as a store or an office, or quarters used for the storage of business supplies or inventory, machinery, or agricultural products.

Excerpt from: Social Explorer, U.S. Census Bureau; Census of Population and Housing, 1990: Summary Tape File 3 on CD-ROM [machine-readable data files] / prepared by the Bureau of the Census. Washington: The Bureau [producer and distributor], 1991.
 
Bedrooms
The data on bedrooms were obtained from questionnaire item H9, which was asked at both occupied and vacant housing units. This item was asked on a sample basis. The number of bedrooms is the count of rooms designed to be used as bedrooms; that is, the number of rooms that would be listed as bedrooms if the house or apartment were on the market for sale or for rent. Included are all rooms intended to be used as bedrooms even if they currently are being used for some other purpose. A housing unit consisting of only one room, such as a one-room efficiency apartment, is classified, by definition, as having no bedroom.

Comparability
Data on bedrooms have been collected in every census since 1960. In 1970 and 1980, data for bedrooms were shown only for year-round units. In past censuses, a room was defined as a bedroom if it was used mainly for sleeping even if also used for other purposes. Rooms that were designed to be used as bedrooms but used mainly for other purposes were not considered to be bedrooms. A distribution of housing units by number of bedrooms calculated from data collected in a 1986 test showed virtually no differences in the two versions except in the two bedroom category, where the previous "use" definition showed a slightly lower proportion of units.