Latest release

Number of bedrooms in private dwelling (ranges) (BEDRD)

Census of Population and Housing: Census dictionary
Reference period


This variable records the number of bedrooms in each occupied private dwelling in ranges. A private dwelling is defined in Dwelling structure (STRD) and can include caravans in caravan parks, occupied tents, and houseboats. In standard Census products (Quickstats, Community Profiles) number of bedrooms data is generally published in ranges.

Number of bedrooms is also available as a single count of all bedrooms (BEDD).


Occupied private dwellings




None (includes studio apartments or bedsitters)


One bedroom


Two bedrooms


Three bedrooms


Four bedrooms


Five bedrooms


Six bedrooms or more


Not stated


Not applicable

Number of categories:  9

Not applicable (@) category comprises:

  • Unoccupied private dwellings
  • Non-private dwellings
  • Migratory, off-shore and shipping SA1s

Question(s) from the Census form

How many bedrooms are there in this dwelling?

    How many bedrooms are there in this dwelling?
    How many bedrooms are there at 1 Smith Street?

    If the dwelling is a bedsitter or studio, enter '0'.

    More information

    Number of bedrooms

      More Information

      Additional information relating to the question on: How many bedrooms are there in this dwelling?

      More Information

      How many bedrooms are there at 1 Smith Street?

      If the dwelling is a bedsitter or studio, enter '0'.

      More information

      Include any room that is defined as a bedroom, even if it is used for a different purpose, for example, as a study, office, computer room or sewing room.

      Include any bedrooms created as a result of alterations and additions to the house (such as built-in verandas, extensions or cabins).

      How this variable is created

      This variable is created based on responses given for the Number of bedrooms question on the Census form. The responses are captured automatically from written numeric responses, or from the 'None' mark box on the paper form.

      The Number of bedrooms in private dwelling (ranges) (BEDRD) variable groups responses to this question. Responses from 0 to 5 are reported singly while responses for 6 or more bedrooms are coded into the grouped category of '6 or more bedrooms'.

      History and changes

      A question on the number of rooms/bedrooms has been included in every Australian Census since 1911. However, the question relating to number of bedrooms in a private dwelling was first asked in the 1976 Census.

      The 1986 Census form asked householders to indicate the numbers of various room types within the dwelling. Only the number of bedrooms was retained in the computer record. The 1991 and 1996 Censuses collected data on the number of bedrooms only.

      Since the 2001 Census, respondents have been asked to write in the number of bedrooms in their dwelling rather than mark a response category. An additional 'None' mark box was added to the paper form in 2006.

      In 2021, the category has been reworded from ‘None (includes bedsitters)’ to ‘None (includes studio apartments or bedsitters)’.

      Data use considerations

      Number of bedrooms data is commonly used to provide an indication of:

      • Dwelling size
      • Overcrowding by calculating occupancy ratios (i.e. the number of people per room/bedroom).

      When calculating occupancy ratios, it is preferable to use the number of people usually resident in the home, rather than the number of people present in the household on Census night. This data can be used with Dwelling structure (STRD) and Dwelling location (DLOD) to provide more context to the number of bedrooms.

      Related variables and glossary terms

      • Number of bedrooms in private dwelling (BEDD)
      • Residential status in a non-private dwelling (RLNP)
      • Housing suitability (HOSD)
      • Dwelling structure (STRD)
      • Dwelling locations (DLOD)
      • Dwelling type (DWTD)

      Other ABS sources