U.S. Housing Unit Occupancy Statistics
The American Community Survey (ACS), conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, publishes detailed estimates about housing each year. Unlike the Census—which is an exact count of people and households every ten years—ACS statistics are estimated based on a representative survey sample.
How has the number of occupied housing units changed over time in the United States?
How many housing units are owner- or renter-occupied?
How do the size of households and housing units vary by tenure?
Note: Use the time-slider to change the year displayed on charts.
What do American housing units use for heat?
The most commonly-used heating sources are utility gas and electricity. The chart below breaks down the number of U.S. housing units by these heat sources.
The next chart shows U.S. housing units by less commonly-used heating fuels and other sources. (Note the scale is different from the chart above.)
How many U.S. housing units lack plumbing or kitchens?
The ACS asks questions about the presence of hot and cold running water, a bathtub or shower, a sink with a faucet, a stove or range, and a refrigerator to create statistics about indicators of housing quality. Federal and local governments use these estimates to identify areas eligible for housing assistance, rehabilitation loans, and other programs that help people access and afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing. Public health officials may also use this information to locate areas in danger of ground water contamination and waterborne diseases.
While the presence of these facilities in the home has increased over time, there are still areas in the United States where they are not available. Individual items (hot and cold running water, etc.) are asked about separately on the ACS to allow housing analysts to evaluate individual indicators of housing quality, and determine which items are lacking in particular areas.
About the Data
Data is from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS), 1-year estimates. The following tables are used:
• Occupied and Vacant Units: Table B25002
• Housing by Tenure: Table B25003
• Household Size: Table B25009
• Number of Rooms: Table B25020
• Housing and Heating Fuel: Table B25117
• Lack of Plumbing: Table B25049
• Lack of Kitchens: B25053
This report uses the Census Bureau Data API but is not endorsed or certified by the Census Bureau.