The Methods and Materials Used to Generate Two Key Elementsof the Housing Unit Method: (1) Vacancy Rate and (2) Persons Per Household

David A. Swanson, University of California, Riverside

The U.S. Census Bureau is considering the implementation of the Housing Unit Method (HUM) for use in its annual post-censal population estimates program. This paper provides an examination of methods that can be used to estimate the average number of persons per household (PPH) and vacancy rates (VR), variables used in the HUM. It compares the results of using the Census Bureau’s current method for estimating PPH and VR with alternative methods. The report includes an evaluation of the methods along with description of each method, its underlying theory and logic and an example, where feasible, in the form of an illustrative calculation. Each method is assessed relative to a set of evaluation criteria. Results suggest that the Census Bureau continue with its development of a comprehensive system based on the HUM for the annual estimates of county populations nationwide.

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Presented in Session 16: Sub-National Estimates and Projections