2900.0 - Census of Population and Housing: Understanding the Census and Census Data, Australia , 2016  
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Dwelling Location (DLOD)

This variable provides information about the location of dwellings other than a 'typical' private dwelling. It is used to identify whether dwellings of a specific structure, such as caravans, are located in communal locations, such as in a caravan park. This classification complements the private dwelling structure classification and enables the ABS to meet user requirements for data about these less common forms of housing and their occupants. This variable is applicable to all private dwellings.

How this variable is created

In 2016 there was a change in the way this information was collected. The collection of Dwelling Location data was recorded by ABS Address Canvassing Officers prior to the Census, as part of establishing the Address Register as a mail-out frame for designated areas. In areas enumerated using the traditional approach of delivering forms, the information was collected by ABS Field Officers during the Census collection period. Although the dwelling location was predominately collected by address canvassers in mail out areas, Census Field Officers verified dwelling location during the enumeration period.

If the Dwelling Location could not be determined it was set to 'Other'. The majority of private dwellings fall into the 'Other' category for this data item.

Variable history

This variable was introduced for the 1996 Census to cater for changes in the scope of private dwellings.

From the 2006 Census onwards information regarding this variable has been collected by ABS Field officers rather than being included on the Census Household form. From 2006 the description for 'Caravan park' changed to 'Caravan/residential park or camping ground', and the description for 'Accommodation for the retired or aged (self-care)' changed to 'Retirement village (self-contained).

Even though the collection method changed for the 2016 Census (as stated above) the variable categories were unchanged for the 2016 census.

Non-response rate

Dwelling Location does not have a non-response rate as it is assigned by ABS Field officers to all private dwellings during Census enumeration or processing.

Data usage notes

As this variable is determined by ABS Field Staff, the risk of processing error is very low. While the risk of an ABS Field Officer mis-classifying the Dwelling Location of a dwelling is low, certain types of Dwelling Location were given particular attention during processing. This resulted in the identification and amendment of a small number of dwellings that had been mis-classified in the field. In rare cases, an establishment may fall into more than one category of dwelling location, such as a retirement village that contains manufactured homes, or a residential park that is made up of a mixture of caravans and manufactured homes; however, a dwelling can only be allocated to a single category. In these cases a determination was made during Census processing of the most appropriate category for the dwellings in question.

In 2011, Field Officers were permitted to select multiple dwelling location types when a distinct option was not appropriate. During processing, a set precedence order was applied to choose the final category. In 2016, Field Officers were only permitted to select one dwelling location type but with an option to provide further comments/ details if uncertainty exists. These comments were reviewed and altered if required based on a precedence order identical to 2011. This change in procedure is unlikely to affect the time series of this variable data.

Further information

A definition of Dwelling Location is available in the 2016 Census Dictionary.