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Census 2000 Brief: Housing Characteristics: 2000

Written by:
Report Number C2KBR/01-13

According to Census 2000, there were 115.9 million housing units in the United States. Most of these housing units had people living in them (105.5 million or 91.0 percent of all housing units). The remaining 10.4 million units (9.0 percent) were vacant on Census Day. Between 1990 and 2000, the United States housing inventory increased by 13.6 million units or 13.3 percent. The South1 (17.5 percent) and the West (16.7 percent) regions experienced higher rates of housing growth than the Midwest (10.1 percent) and the Northeast (6.6 percent).

This report, part of a series that analyzes data from Census 2000, highlights housing in 2000 and changes in housing characteristics between 1990 and 2000 in regions, states, metropolitan areas, counties, and large cities.

Housing tenure identifies a basic feature of the housing inventory, whether a unit is owner or renter occupied. It has been collected since 1890. The Census 2000 question on tenure was identical to the one used in 1990. For 1990, the response categories were expanded to allow the respondent to report whether the unit was owned with a mortgage or loan or owned free and clear (without a mortgage). The distinction between units owned with a mortgage and units owned free and clear was added in 1990 to improve the count of owner-occupied units, as research after the 1980 census indicated some respondents did not consider their units owned if they had a mortgage.

1 The Northeast region includes Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The Midwest includes Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. The South includes Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia. The West includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.


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