New York City Housing and Vacancy Survey (NYCHVS)

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2011 NYCHVS Glossary

The following definitions were prepared by the US Census Bureau to describe characteristics of individuals, households, housing units, and neighborhoods that are available from the 2011 New York City Housing and Vacancy Survey.

Accessibility. See Wheelchair Accessibility.

Additional Heating Required. Additional heating refers to households that reported using additional sources of heat to supplement their regular system, because the regular system, though functioning, did not provide enough heat during the winter prior to the time of interview. Additional sources of heat, such as kitchen stoves, fireplaces, or portable heaters, may have been used only in the mornings or on extra cold days. Electric blankets, heating pads, or hot water bottles are not considered additional sources of heat.

Age. Age classification is based on the age reported as of that person's last birthday. Children under 1 year of age are classified as 1 year old. Persons age 99 and over are noted as 99 years old.

Asking Rent. See Monthly Asking Rent.

Average Hours Worked in 2010. This item refers to the number of hours per week in 2010 typically spent at work. Hours spent at work include any kind of leave for which the subject is paid as usual.

Bedrooms. The number of bedrooms in the housing unit is the count of rooms used mainly for sleeping, even if also used for other purposes. Rooms reserved for sleeping, such as guest rooms, even though used infrequently, are counted as bedrooms. On the other hand, rooms used mainly for other purposes, even though used also for sleeping, such as a living room with a sleep sofa, are not considered bedrooms. A housing unit consisting of only one room, such as a one-room efficiency apartment, is classified by definition as having no bedroom.

Broken Plaster or Peeling Paint. The data refer to whether or not the household reported broken plaster or peeling paint on the interior ceilings or walls of the unit. If the condition existed, additional data show whether the area(s) are larger than 8.5 inches by 11 inches.

Buildings with Broken or Boarded-Up Windows. This is an observation item marked by the field representative. This item concerns buildings with broken or boarded up windows on the same street (both sides within the same block) as the sample unit.

Cash Rent. Money rent paid for occupancy of a housing unit in the form of cash, check, money order, debit or credit card payment.

Cell Phone Usage. The number of adults aged 18+ who have a cell phone available. This includes use of a shared cell phone available at least one-third of the time.

Condition. The following items on building condition were determined by observation by the field representative as he/she approached the building containing the sample unit and walked inside. More than one problem may have been observed for each condition item. The category "Unable to Observe" includes situations in which interviewing may have taken place at night, and the field representative could not see well enough to observe a particular condition.

  1. External Walls
    • Missing bricks, siding, or other outside wall material includes units in buildings with defects that can only be corrected by extensive repairs to siding, shingles, boards, brick, concrete, or stucco. Data exclude units in buildings with materials missing temporarily due to repair/construction.
    • Sloping or bulging outside walls include units in buildings with indications of continuous neglect or serious damage to the structure. Data exclude units in buildings with slanting downspouts, sagging shutters, or uneven terrain.
    • Major cracks in outside walls include units in buildings with major open holes or cracks that could allow wind or water to enter the building.
    • Loose or hanging cornice, roofing, or other material includes buildings with loose trim or roofing material defects. A cornice is a horizontal molding along the top of a wall or building.
  2. Windows
    • Broken or missing windows include units in buildings with missing or broken window panes.
    • Rotted/loose window frames/sashes include units in buildings with loose/missing putty, rotted wood, and gaps or cracks where water could penetrate.
    • Boarded-up windows include units in buildings with windows covered with wood, metal, etc. to protect against weather or entry.
  3. Stairways (interior and exterior)
    • Loose, broken, or missing stair railings include units in buildings with any railings that are not secured tightly enough to use with complete confidence.
    • Loose, broken, or missing steps include units in buildings with any loose, broken, or missing steps.
    • No interior steps or stairways include units in buildings without interior stairways, but which may have exterior steps/stairways.
    • No exterior steps or stairways include units in buildings without exterior steps/stairways, but which may have interior steps/stairways.
  4. Floors
    • Sagging or sloping floors include units in buildings with sagging/sloping floors due to excessive wear, age, or possible structural damage.
    • Slanted or shifted doorsills or door frames include units in buildings with slanted or shifting doorsills or frames that may be separating from the door.
    • Deep wear in floor causing depressions includes units in buildings with defects that are due to advanced age or excessive use causing depressions in the floor.
    • Holes or missing flooring includes units in buildings with defects that may be due to rotten or broken wood, faulty masonry, or rodent damage.
  5. Overall Condition of Building
    • Building condition is classified as sound, deteriorating, or dilapidated. In the tabulations, deteriorating and sound are combined into the category "not dilapidated," based on the presence of observed defects. Sound buildings have no defects or slight defects only, such as cracked window panes or missing paint. Deteriorating buildings show a lack of proper upkeep that cannot be corrected by normal maintenance. One or more intermediate defects, such as rotted or loose window frames or broken or missing interior stair risers, would cause a building to be classified as "deteriorating." Dilapidated buildings do not provide safe and adequate shelter to the occupants. A structure was rated dilapidated if it showed one or more critical defects or a combination of intermediate defects or inadequate original construction.

Condominium. A condominium is a building or development with individually owned apartments or houses. The owner has his/her own deed, and very likely, his/her own mortgage on the unit. The owner also holds a common or joint ownership in all common areas and facilities that serve the project -- land, roofs, hallways, entrance elevators, etc. The condominium status question is separate from the tenure question; therefore, condominium units can be classified as either owner-occupied (or vacant-for-sale) or renter-occupied (or vacant-for-rent).

Condominium/Cooperative Conversion. The data are based on whether the householder lived in the unit and paid cash rent at the same time the building became a cooperative or condominium. If the householder reported yes to living in the unit and paying cash rent at the time of the conversion, data are available on whether or not the conversion was done through a non-eviction plan.

  • Non-eviction Plan Conversion. Rental apartments can be converted to condominiums or cooperatives through either an "eviction" plan or a "non-eviction" plan. A "non-eviction" plan allows persons who occupied an apartment at the time it became a condominium or cooperative to continue to occupy and rent the apartment without purchasing it. Tenants may not be evicted if they do not buy their unit. Data for this item are limited to renter occupied condominiums and cooperatives.

Contract Rent. See Monthly Contract Rent.

Control Status (Rent Regulation Status). Control status definitions were prepared by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, Division of Housing Policy Analysis and Statistical Research. See Definitions of Rent Regulation Status.

Cooperative. A cooperative is a building or development that is owned by its shareholders and is organized as a corporation. It may also be called a stock cooperative or co-op. Ownership of shares in the corporation entitles each shareholder to hold the lease for one or more apartments (houses). If the person or persons owning the cooperative shares also occupies the unit, the cooperative unit is considered owner-occupied. The cooperative status question is separate from the tenure question; therefore, cooperative units can also be classified as renter-occupied vacant-for-rent, or vacant-for-sale.

Cracks/Holes in Interior Walls or Ceiling. This item is based on the respondent's report of cracks or holes in interior walls or ceiling of the unit. Cracks may have been due to any of the following reasons: damage by rats or mice, rotten wood, faulty masonry, or normal building settling. Included are cracks or holes that do not go all the way through to the next room, housing unit, or to the outdoors. Hairline cracks (cracks appearing in the walls or ceiling that aren't large enough to insert a finger nail file) and small holes caused by nails or thumbtacks are not included.

Down Payment. Money paid in advance or at the time of settlement or closing as partial or full payment of the purchase price is the down payment. Down payment can also be thought of as the buyer's interest or initial equity in the apartment (house). In the case of Mitchell-Lama cooperatives, the purchase price and the down payment may be identical. The down payment data are limited to units acquired in 2006 or later, and do not include closing costs.

Duration of Vacancy. The time periods shown represent the time the last occupants vacated the unit to the day of the first attempt at interviewing. For newly constructed units, the time refers to the date that the unit is ready for occupancy to the day of the first interviewing attempt. A unit is considered vacant until occupied, regardless of the date on a lease, rental payment, or property settlement.

Education Level. Educational level applies only to progress completed in "regular" school. Such schools include graded public, private, and parochial elementary and high schools (both junior and senior high), colleges, universities, and professional schools, whether day schools or night schools. Thus, regular schooling is that which may advance a person toward an elementary school certificate, high school diploma, or a college, university, or professional school degree.

Schooling in other than regular schools is counted only if the credits obtained are regarded as transferable to a school in the regular school system. For education received in an ungraded or foreign school, the equivalent grade level in the American school system is estimated. Data are limited to persons 15 years or older.

Education (current). This applies to programs the person is currently enrolled in. This includes regular schooling such as senior high schools; colleges; universities; and graduate or professional schools. It also includes enrollment in GED, literacy, ESL and occupational, vocational or apprenticeship programs.

Employment. See Labor Force Status.

Energy Assistance. See Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP).

Exterminator Service. Exterminator service is a service provided by a company or individual using chemicals or sprays to control rodents or pests. Data were collected on the frequency of the service described below:

  1. Regularly - Service is provided on any regular interval such as weekly or monthly.
  2. Only when needed - Service is provided on an "as needed basis."
  3. Irregularly - Service is seldom provided for rodent infestation, or the respondent knows there is service but not how often.
  4. Not at all - Service is never provided.
  5. Don't know - Respondent does not know if service is provided.

Falls. The item reports whether a household member age 65 or over has fallen in the home within the past three months.

Fire and Liability Insurance. Data are available for the following:

  1. Whether the property is covered by fire and liability insurance, and if the premium is paid separately.
  2. The annual cost of the insurance for 2010 if it was paid separately from the mortgage or cooperative/condominium maintenance fee.
  3. Whether the fire and liability insurance covers personal possessions.

Floor of Unit. This item shows on which story in a building the sample unit is located. For units that occupy multiple stories, the lowest floor occupied was used. For homes that include a basement and a main floor, the main or first floor was used.

Grab Bars. For households with at least one person aged 65 or over, the survey asks if grab bars are available in the bathtub/shower, or near the toilet, or both.

Gross Rent. See Monthly Gross Rent.

Health Condition. This is the respondent's rating of his/her general health condition as excellent, very good, good, fair, or poor, or whether the respondent does not know.

Health Care Postponed. This refers to the respondent’s answers to whether certain types of health care were postponed for financial reasons during the past year. The types of care referenced were: dental, preventative care/check-ups, mental health, treatment or diagnosis of illness or health condition, and prescription drugs.

Heating Equipment Breakdown. Breakdowns or failures in heating systems refer to households that reported a heating equipment breakdown that lasted six consecutive hours or longer during the winter prior to the time of the survey. Heating equipment is considered unusable if it cannot be used for the purposes intended; the breakdown may be caused by broken pipes, electrical or gas parts out of order, downed power lines, running out of fuel, or other situations.

Holes in Floors. This item is based on respondent's report of holes in floors. It refers to holes inside the unit that may have been due to any of the following reasons: damage by rats or mice, rotten wood, faulty masonry, or normal building settling. The holes need not go through the floor to be included. Excluded are very small holes caused by nails or similar objects.

Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP). This item determines if the household was part of the HEAP program in 2010 and the amount of assistance received that year. HEAP is a federally-funded program that provides heating benefits to low-income New Yorkers in one of three ways:

  • Regular benefit – Assistance with the cost of heating their homes.
  • Emergency benefit – Assistance with heat or heat-related emergencies when the household lacks the resources to resolve the emergency on their own.
  • Furnace repair or replacement – assistance to repair/replace furnaces, boilers, and other direct heating equipment necessary to keep the home’s primary heating source functional.

Hours Worked Last Week. This item refers to the actual number of hours worked (including overtime), not the usual or required hours. Excluded from the number of hours worked are lunch breaks and sick or vacation leave. If two jobs were worked, the total number of hours worked at both jobs is included.

Household Composition. Three main categories are presented. Each category consists of these components: with no other household members, with no children under 18, and with other adults and children under 18.

  • Married Couple. Each household in this category consists of the householder and spouse, and may include other persons, all of whom may or may not be related to the householder.
  • Female Householder. This category includes households with female householders with no spouse present. These householders may be widowed, divorced, separated, or never married. Other related or unrelated people may also live in the household.
  • Male Householder. This category includes households with male householders with no spouse present. These householders may be widowed, divorced, separated, or never married. Other related or unrelated people may also live in the household.

Household Members Under Age 6 and Under Age 18. These items include all members of the household (other than the householder and his/her spouse) regardless of their relationship to the householder, who fall into these age groups.

Households Below Specific Income Level. The specified income level statistics presented are derived from an updated poverty level index used in the Census Bureau=s March Current Population Survey supplement. This index is based on a definition originated by the Social Security Administration in 1964 and subsequently modified by a Federal Interagency Committee in 1969. This index, as applied to the NYCHVS, provides a range of income cutoffs or "poverty thresholds" adjusted to take into account such factors as size of family unit, age of householder, and number of children. See 2010 Poverty Threshold Chart [XLS].

Housing Unit. A housing unit is a house, an apartment, a group of rooms, or a single room occupied or intended for occupancy as separate living quarters. A housing unit can exist within, over, or under a structure that appears to be nonresidential or commercial. Housing units must meet both of the following qualifications:

  • Be separate living quarters, meaning occupants live separately from any other occupants in the building, and
  • Have direct access, meaning that the entrance to the living quarters must be directly from the outside of the building or through a common hall.

For vacant units, the same criteria are applied for the intended occupants.

Immigration Status. Indicates whether a householder not born in the USA came here as an immigrant. If the householder was not born in the USA, year moved to the U.S. is provided. If born outside New York City, year he/she moved to New York City is provided. Householders born in Puerto Rico are already U.S. citizens; thus not considered to be immigrants.

Income of Households. Household income is the income of all members of the household 15 years or older regardless of whether they are related to the householder or not. The data represent income for the calendar year 2010 and are the sum of the amounts for each of the following sources:

  1. Wage and salary income includes total income from wages, salary, tips, bonuses, commissions and leave before all deductions.
  2. Net income from own farm or nonfarm business, proprietorship, or partnership includes the total money receipts for goods sold or services rendered minus business expenses. Business expenses include rent, utilities, employee pay, business taxes, cost of goods, and depreciation on buildings/equipment, etc. Salary from an unincorporated business is not an expense; it is part of income from the business.
  3. Interest or dividends, net rental or royalty income, or income from estates and trusts includes the following items:
    • Interest - money received or credited to a savings account, bonds, or savings certificates. Interest accruing to retirement accounts that cannot be withdrawn in the near future is excluded.
    • Dividends - payments made by corporations and mutual funds to shareholders.
    • Net rental income - includes income from tenants/roomers/boarders and rent received less expenses of paying for and maintaining the property.
    • Net royalty income - gross income from mineral, gas, or oil rights, patents, trademarks, literary works, formulas, etc. less deductions. Deductions against gross royalties are made for depletion, depreciation, office expenses, interest, taxes, and similar items.
    • Estates and trusts - periodic payment received from these entities.
  4. Social Security or railroad retirement income includes Social Security and railroad retirement payments. Some persons receiving these payments have Medicare deducted. However, for this survey, the Medicare deduction is counted as income and included in this item. If recipients are under age 15, the allotment is reported for the person to whom the check is sent (if the person is age 15 or over).
  5. Income from government programs includes the following:
    • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) - payments received from a program run by the Social Security Administration for low income, elderly, or disabled persons. Payment may come from the federal government, state, or local welfare office. It is not Social Security income.
    • Family Assistance/Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) - payments received through a welfare program administered by the state or local government to families with dependent children.
    • Safety Net Assistance - payments received through a program that is a form of public assistance for low income households with no dependent children.
    • Shelter Allowance - payments that help to defray all or part of the cost for shelter. These may be paid directly to the recipient or to the landlord. Amount is reported for the person to whom it is issued.
  6. Income from retirement, survivor, or disability pensions (but not Social Security) includes the following:
    • Private pensions - payments received from a former employer, labor union, etc. A survivor is also eligible as a beneficiary.
    • Government employee pensions - monthly payments to former employees and survivors paid by federal, state, or local agencies, or the Armed Forces.
    • Disability pensions - payments resulting from some severe or permanent injury, illness, or disability. The payment can be from a government agency or private organization.
    • Annuities - periodic payments as a return on an investment such as life insurance.
    • IRA and Keogh Plans - payments from retirement accounts received by persons aged 59 years old or older, or by disabled persons.
  7. Income from veteran's payments, unemployment compensation, child support, alimony, or regular contribution from other sources includes the following:
    • Veteran's payments - periodic payments to disabled veterans, survivors of deceased veterans, living expense stipends paid during education/training, and annual refunds paid on GI life insurance policies.
    • Unemployment compensation - payments from state unemployment insurance funds, railroad unemployment benefits, labor union strike funds, and supplemental payments from companies to help replace wages during work layoffs. It also includes Federal Supplementary Compensation to persons who had exhausted their state payments.
      Also included are payments for training, transportation, and/or subsistence by persons undergoing classroom training provided through the Job Training Partnership Act through state or local governments.
    • Child support - payment for support of children not living with one parent as a result of divorce or legal separation. Payment may also be made through a court system.
    • Alimony - payment received after a divorce or legal separation.
    • Other sources - financial assistance from private charitable organizations such as the Red Cross or a church, any contributions from persons not living in the household, scholarships or fellowships received by students for which no work or service is required, and anything else not mentioned.

Income of Persons. The data reflect total income from all sources for all persons 15 years old or older during calendar year 2010. See Income of Households for a description of the various income sources.

Income of Primary Individuals. The data represent total income from all sources during calendar year 2010 for householders who live alone. See Income of Households for a description of each income source.

Industry Code. Industry classifications use the 2007 Census industry classification system developed from the 2007 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) published by the Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget. This system consists of 269 categories for employed people, including military, classified into 20 sectors. 2011 NYCHVS industry codes [PDF] are 4-digit codes.

Kitchen Facilities. A housing unit has complete kitchen facilities if it has a sink with piped water, a range or cookstove, and a refrigerator. All facilities must be located in the unit although they do not need to be in the same room. Kitchen facilities are for exclusive use if they are only used by the occupants of the unit. In the case of vacant units, the same criteria were used in determining complete kitchen facilities and their exclusive use, but the criteria were applied to the intended occupants. Kitchen facilities are considered to be functioning if they work at all, even if imperfectly.

Labor Force Status. All persons 15 years and older are classified into one of two major labor force groups. The groups are described below:

  1. In the Labor Force. Persons are classified as in the labor force if they are employed, unemployed, or in the Armed Forces the week prior to interview.
    • Employed/Armed Forces. Employed persons comprise (1) all individuals who, during the week prior to interview, did any work at all as paid employees or in their own business or profession, or who worked as unpaid workers for 15 hours or more a week in a business operated by a member of the family and (2) all those who had jobs but were not working because of illness, bad weather, vacation, or labor-management dispute, or because they were taking time off for personal reasons, whether or not they were seeking other jobs. Each employed person was counted only once. Those persons who held more than one job were counted in the job at which they worked the greatest number of hours during the week prior to interview. If they worked an equal number of hours at more than one job, they were counted at the job they held the longest.
    • Unemployed. Unemployed persons are those individuals who, during the week prior to interview, had no employment but were available for work, and (1) had engaged in any specific job seeking activity within the past 4 weeks such as registering at a public or private employment office, meeting with prospective employers, checking with friends or relatives, placing or answering advertisements, writing letters of application, or being on a union or professional register; (2) were waiting to be called back to a job from which they had been laid off; or (3) were waiting to report to a new wage or salary job within 30 days.
  2. Not in Labor Force.The category "not in the labor force" includes the following:
    • Persons who reported doing unpaid work in a family business for less than 15 hours a week.
    • Persons who reported being temporarily absent (for any reason other than a layoff) from working in a family business without pay.
    • Persons who reported not working the week prior to interview, and one of the following situations existed:
      • The person responded "no" to being temporarily absent from a job.
      • The person responded "no" to looking for work during the last four weeks, or the person did not report whether he/she was looking for work.

Length of Lease. A lease is defined as a contract granting use or occupancy during a specified period in exchange for rent. The length of lease is from the time the lease originated, not from the time of the interview. The data are limited to households paying cash rent.

Looking for Work During the Last Four Weeks. The data represent whether or not individuals who did not work last week or were not on temporary absence or layoff tried to get a job or start a business during the last four weeks prior to interview. Examples of seeking work include: placing or answering advertisements for help, writing letters/resumes, consulting an employment agency, exploring the possibilities of starting a business or practice, and checking with a union or other workers organization.

Maintenance Deficiencies. See Number of 1987 and 2011 Maintenance Deficiencies.

Monthly Asking Rent. The asking rent for vacant for-rent housing units is the rent asked for the unit at the time of interview which may differ from the rent paid at the time the unit was occupied. The asking rent may or may not include utilities.

Monthly Condominium or Cooperative Maintenance Fees. This question applies only to owner occupied condominiums or cooperatives. Some or all of the following may be included in condominium or cooperative maintenance fees: real estate taxes; fire insurance; other hazard insurance; payments on the underlying building mortgage; salaries of maintenance employees; heating expenses; utilities; and reserves for major repairs, maintenance, etc.

Monthly Contract Rent. Monthly contract rent is the rent agreed to or contracted for, even if furnishings, utilities, or services are included. It is the total rent scheduled to be paid to the landlord, regardless of who pays it, such as a parent helping a child. Rental units occupied without payment of cash rent are classified as either "no cash rent," or occupied rent free.

Monthly Gross Rent. Monthly gross rent is the monthly contract rent plus the monthly cost of utilities, (electricity, gas, and water and sewer) and other fuels (oil, coal, kerosene, wood, etc.) if these items are paid by the renter in addition to rent. Use of this measure eliminates differentials that result from varying practices with respect to the inclusion of utilities and fuels as part of the rent payment.

Monthly Mortgage or Loan Payment. This is the amount paid to the lender or lenders for the mortgage(s) or loan(s) outstanding on the apartment (house). It includes payments for principal and interest, real estate taxes, fire and liability insurance, and mortgage insurance, if they are part of the mortgage payment.

Monthly Out-of-Pocket Rent. The total amount of rent NOT paid by a government housing subsidy program. For public assistance recipients, this includes funds from the basic grant (non-shelter allowance). Out-of-pocket also includes payments or help with rent from outside, non-government program sources such as per diem reimbursement, or help from parents, friends, or a church.

Mortgage Interest Rate. This is the rate of interest on the most recent home loan and is asked only at owner-occupied units with a mortgage.

Mortgage Status. This item refers to whether there is a mortgage or similar loan outstanding on the apartment (house), or whether it is owned free and clear. A mortgage or similar debt refers to all forms of debt where the property is pledged as security for payment of debt, including home equity loans. A home equity loan is a mortgage in which a line of credit is established allowing the owner to borrow against equity in the unit. It may be placed on a property that already has a first or second mortgage, or it may be placed on a property that is owned free and clear. Owners of cooperatives technically do not have mortgages, but the loans they have taken to finance the purchase of shares in the cooperative are considered "similar loans" for the purpose of this survey.

Most Recent Place Lived 6 Months or More. Data are presented for the place that the householder lived continuously for at least six months before moving to his/her current residence.

Neighborhood Rating. The data presented are based on the respondent's overall opinion of the physical condition of the residential structures in his/her neighborhood.

Nonrelative. A nonrelative of the householder is any person in the household that is not related to the householder (reference person) by blood, marriage, or adoption. Roomers, boarders, lodgers, partners, resident employees, wards, and foster children are included in this category.

Number of 1987 and 2011 Maintenance Deficiencies. The data for these items consist of a count of all households answering affirmatively to the specific maintenance deficiency items collected in 1987 and 2011. To be counted in one of the five 1987 deficiency categories, all of the following items had to be reported: heating equipment breakdown (one or more times), additional heating required, rodent infestation, cracks/holes in the walls, ceilings or floors, and broken plaster/peeling paint larger than 8.5 x 11 inches. Beginning in 1991, the list was expanded to include toilet breakdowns and water leaks from outside the unit. Data are presented separately for the 5 deficiency items on the 1987 survey and the 7 deficiency items on the 2011 survey.

Number of Persons. All persons occupying the housing unit are counted. These persons include not only occupants related to the householder but also any lodgers, roomers, boarders, partners, wards, foster children, resident employees, and any others who share the housing unit of the householder.

Number of Stories in Building. This item refers to the number of floors in the building. Basement apartments are counted as a floor only if occupied.

Number of Units in Building. In determining the number of housing units in a building, all units (both occupied and vacant) are counted. A building is classified as a separate building if it has either open space on all sides or is separated from other structures by dividing walls that extend from ground to roof. Data from this item represent the number of housing units located in buildings of a specified size, not the number of residential buildings.

Number of Weeks Worked in 2010. This refers to the number of weeks worked during the last year in which the subject spent one or more hours at work. This number should include weeks spent on paid leave; such as paid sick leave, paid vacation, or military service. Weeks spent on unpaid leave or layoff are not included.

Occupancy Status Before Acquisition. The data are limited to owner occupied units and refer to the status prior to the householder's acquisition of the apartment (house). The categories are as follows:

  • Owned and Occupied by Another Household - The unit was purchased from the previous owner.
  • Rented by Reference Person - The unit was rented by the reference person before the purchase occurred.
  • Rented by Another Household - The unit was occupied and rented by another household before it was purchased.
  • Never Previously Occupied - The unit was newly constructed or gut rehabilitated and the current occupants are the first occupants.
  • Don't Know - The respondent does not know the previous situation of the unit.

Occupation Codes. 2011 NYCHVS occupation codes [PDF] are 4-digit codes based on the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) Manual published by the Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget. There are 539 specific Census occupational categories, for employed people, including military, arranged into 23 major occupational groups.

Owner in Building. The owner need not live in the sample unit to be considered as living in the building.

Ownership Status. The categories for homeowner units (occupied and vacant) are:

  • Homeowner (Conventional). Privately owned houses or buildings which are NOT part of a cooperative or condominium building or development. This category includes owner-occupied single-family houses, living quarters in partially-commercial buildings (such as a doctor´s office and living quarters together in one building), and all other types of owner-occupied units which are not in cooperatives and condominiums.
  • Mitchell-Lama Coop. The units were constructed under the New York State or New York City Mitchell-Lama cooperative program. The purpose of the program is to enable moderate and middle-income families to secure decent affordable housing through limited equity cooperative ownership.The mechanisms employed to keep both the initial down payment and monthly carrying charges within the means of middle-income families, to which the program is restricted, are: tax exemption, state or city provided low interest mortgages, and limited developer profit. In certain instances, federal subsidies are combined with the state and local measures to achieve the program's objectives.
  • Private Coop/Condo. Privately owned cooperative or condominium units which were not constructed under the New York State or New York City Mitchell-Lama program. A portion of the units in this category may have benefitted from some other type of government assistance (e.g. J-51, 421A).

Passenger Elevator in Building. This item refers to the presence of an elevator in the building in working or non-working order. Excluded are elevators used only for freight. In the tabulations, data are shown by the number of housing units in structures with two or more stories which have one or more passenger elevators on the same floor as the sample unit.

Persons from Homeless Situation. This item refers to whether a person has come from a homeless situation before moving into his/her current residence. This may be a shelter, a transitional center, or a homeless hotel. A person is not considered to be homeless if they are able to afford shelter, live with someone to save money, a child living with parents, or staying with friends while looking for a place to live. The data are limited to persons coming from a homeless situation within the past 5 years. This item also asks whether those persons were in a homeless situation for financial reasons, or for other reasons such as substance abuse, emotional or mental problems, or personal preference.

Persons Per Room. Persons per room is computed for each occupied housing unit by dividing the number of persons in the unit by the number of rooms in the unit. The data refer, therefore, to the number of housing units having the specified ratio of persons per room. See Rooms for a description of what constitutes a room.

Pests. The data refer to the presence of mice or rats in the building and cockroaches in the unit during a specified time period.

  • Mice and rats: the data refer to whether the household reported seeing mice or rats or signs/traces of their presence inside the house or building during the last three months.
  • Signs/traces of mice and rats include droppings, holes in the wall, or torn food containers.
  • Cockroaches: this is the respondent´s estimate of the number of cockroaches seen in the unit on a typical day during the past month.

Place of Birth. This item refers to where the householder and his/her parents were born. The householder was asked to select from the following categories: New York City; U.S., outside New York City; Puerto Rico; Dominican Republic; Caribbean (other than Puerto Rico or Dominican Republic); Mexico; Central America, South America; Canada; Europe; Russia/Successor States to the Soviet Union (Ukraine, Georgia, etc.); China, Hong Kong, Taiwan; Korea; India; Pakistan, Bangladesh; Philippines; Southeast Asia (Burma, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam); Other Asia; Africa; and all other countries.

Plumbing Facilities. A housing unit has complete plumbing facilities if it has hot and cold piped water, a flush toilet, and a bathtub or shower. All facilities need not be located in the same room, but they all must be in the unit. Complete plumbing facilities are for exclusive use if they are used only by the occupants of the unit. For vacant units, the same criteria were used in determining complete plumbing facilities and their exclusive use, but the criteria were applied to the intended occupants.

Poverty Level. See Households Below Specific Income Level and the Table of Federal Poverty Thresholds [XLS].

Primary Individual. A householder who lives alone.

Primary Reason for Not Looking for Work. Data are limited to individuals 15 years or older. Data are presented for the main reason individuals (who did not look for work during the last four weeks) are not seeking work based on the following categories:

  1. Believes no work is available in line of work or area.
  2. Could not find any work.
  3. Lacks necessary schooling, training, skills, or experience.
  4. Employers think too young or too old.
  5. Other personal handicap in finding a job.
  6. Can't arrange child care.
  7. Family responsibilities.
  8. In school or other training.
  9. Ill health or physical disability
  10. Retired.
  11. Other.
  12. Don't know.

Public Assistance or Welfare Payments. This item refers to anyone in the household, regardless of their age or relationship to the householder, who receives public assistance payments from such sources as: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Family Assistance; Safety Net Assistance; Supplemental Security Income; etc. A brief description of these sources is presented in part 5 of the Income of Households definition.

Purchase Price. The purchase price refers to the price of the house and lot or apartment at the time the property was acquired. Closing costs are excluded from the purchase price. The data are limited to households that acquired their units in 2006 or later.

Race. The concept of race as used by the Census Bureau does not denote a clear-cut scientific definition of biological stock. Race was determined for each person in the household on the basis of a question that asked for the respondent´s identification of a person's race in one or more of the following categories:

  1. White
  2. Black or African American
  3. American Indian or Alaska Native
  4. Chinese
  5. Filipino
  6. Korean
  7. Vietnamese
  8. Asian Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi
  9. Other Asian
  10. Native Hawaiian
  11. Other Pacific Islander

Beginning with the 1993 NYCHVS, all persons who reported their race as other were allocated to one of the major race categories, as were persons not reporting race. Beginning in 2002, respondents were able to report multiple races. Thus, use caution when comparing racial data across surveys. For a further explanation of these differences see the section, "Relationship to Previous NYCHVS surveys" that starts in the Overview [PDF].

Real Estate Taxes. Two questions were asked pertaining to real estate taxes. Excluded are payments on delinquent taxes due from prior years. Data are available for the following:

  1. Whether the real estate taxes are paid separately.
  2. The amount of real estate taxes paid in 2010.

Reason Householder Moved From Previous Residence. These data are shown for units where the householder moved into the sample unit in 2008 or later. The categories refer to reasons causing the move from the previous residence. The reasons are described below:

  1. Employment
    • Job Transfer/New Job - Householder moved due to taking a new job or was transferred to area by employer.
    • Retirement - Householder moved after retirement.
    • Looking for Work - Householder moved because it seemed to be a good area to find a job.
    • Commuting Reasons - Householder moved because this unit is closer to place of employment or the commute is more efficient or improved than previous residence.
    • To Attend School - Householder moved to attend school in another area.
    • Other Financial/Employment Reason - Householder moved for some other job related reason.
  2. Family
    • Needed Larger House or Apartment - Householder moved because more space was needed.
    • Widowed - Householder moved because husband/wife passed away.
    • Separated/Divorced - Householder moved due to separation or divorce.
    • Newly Married - Householder moved because of marriage.
    • Moved to Be With or Closer to Relatives - Householder moved to live with or closer to other relatives.
    • Family Decreased (except widowed/separated/divorced) - Householder moved because family size shrank, such as grown children leaving home.
    • Wanted to Establish Separate Household - Householder moved to be "on one's own."
    • Other Family Reasons - Householder moved due to another family reason.
  3. Neighborhood
    • Neighborhood Overcrowded - Householder moved because previous neighborhood was too crowded.
    • Change in Racial or Ethnic Composition of Neighborhood - Householder moved because people of different ethnic groups moved into previous neighborhood.
    • Wanted This Neighborhood/Better Neighborhood Services - Householder moved because there are better services and/or facilities in this neighborhood, or wanted this particular neighborhood.
    • Crime or Safety Concerns - Householder moved because this neighborhood has less crime, or former neighborhood had too much crime.
    • Other Neighborhood Reason - Householder moved due to other neighborhood reason.
  4. Housing
    • Wanted to Own Residence - Householder wanted to own unit.
    • Wanted to Rent Residence - Householder wanted to rent unit.
    • Wanted Less Expensive Residence/Difficulty Paying Rent or Mortgage - Householder moved because previous residence was too costly.
    • Wanted Better Quality Residence - Householder moved because this is a higher quality residence. This may be due to better structural quality or better services such as maintenance or security.
    • Evicted - Householder was evicted from previous residence.
    • Poor Building Condition/Services - Householder moved because previous residence was not properly maintained, or in poor structural condition.
    • Harassment by Landlord - Householder moved because landlord at previous residence damaged the unit/building, threatened, or took other actions to get the resident to move out.
    • Needed Housing Accessible for Persons with Mobility Impairments - The householder moved to this unit because he/she or another household member required housing that was accessible for persons with physical disabilities that impaired mobility.
    • Other Housing Reason - Householder moved because of some other problem with previous residence or amenities of current residence.
  5. Other
    • Displaced by Urban Renewal, Highway Construction, or Other Public Activity - Householder moved because of government action such as road construction.
    • Displaced by Private Action (Other than Eviction) - Householder moved because of private action (other than eviction) such as conversion of a building to cooperative or condominium units.
    • Schools - Householder moved because there are better schools in this neighborhood.
    • Natural Disaster/Fire - Householder moved because last residence was damaged by fire or a natural disaster.
    • Any Other - Householder moved for any other reason not listed above.

Reasons Vacant Unit Not Available. Data are presented for the reason that the vacant unit is not available for sale or for rent according to the following categories:

  • Rented, not yet occupied - If money rent has been paid or a lease signed, but the renter has not moved in, the vacant unit is included in this category.
  • Sold, not yet occupied - If the unit has recently been sold, but the new owner has not yet moved in, the vacant unit is included in this category.
  • Unit or building is undergoing renovation - Includes vacant units which are being renovated, or the building is being renovated.
  • Unit or building is awaiting renovation - Also includes vacant units held off the market until other units in the building can be vacated so that the whole building can be renovated.
  • Being converted to nonresidential purposes - Vacant units that will be converted to nonresidential use are included in this category.
  • There is a legal dispute involving the unit - Includes vacant units wherein the terms of a will, a lawsuit, settlement of an estate, or some other legal matter places the unit in limbo.
  • Being converted or awaiting conversion to condominium or cooperative - Includes vacant units that are not available for rent or sale because they are in the process of being converted to a condo/coop.
  • Held for occasional, seasonal, or recreational use - Includes vacant units which are held for weekend or other occasional use throughout the year. Units belonging to a corporation for occasional use by an employee are also included in this category.
  • The owner cannot rent or sell at this time due to personal problems - Includes vacant units that are unavailable for occupancy because of some personal problem of the owner such as age or illness.
  • Being held pending sale of building - Includes vacant units that are being held until the entire building is sold.
  • Being held for planned demolition - Includes vacant units in a building that the owner plans to demolish once the unit is vacated.
  • Held for other reasons - Includes vacant units that are unavailable for reasons not included in any of the above categories.

Reference Person. The reference person is the household member or one of the household members who owns or rents the sample unit. If no household member owns or rents the sample unit, the first person listed is designated as the householder (reference person). The term reference person is used in the questionnaire but is replaced by the term householder in the final data presentations.

Relationship. Relationships are determined by how each household member is related to the householder. Persons are classified as relatives of the householder if they are related to him/her by blood, marriage, or adoption. Unrelated household members could include a roomer/boarder, foster child, unmarried partner, housemate/roommate, or other nonrelative.

Rent. See Monthly Asking Rent, Monthly Contract Rent, Monthly Gross Rent, or Monthly Out-of-Pocket Rent.

Rent as Percent of Income. This is the percentage of a household's average monthly income represented by the monthly rental expense. Contract Rent as a percent of Income uses the monthly contract rent as the numerator. Gross Rent as a percent of Income uses the monthly gross rent as the numerator. Calculations are not done for households that do not pay rent, have no income, or report a net income loss.

Rent Regulation Status. The final rent regulation status definitions were prepared by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, Division of Housing Policy Analysis and Statistical Research. They were the basis of the regulatory status categories used to code each sample housing unit. See separate section on Definitions of Rent Regulation Status.

Rent Subsidy. This refers to whether the Federal, state, or local government pays part of the unit's rent either to a member of the household or directly to the landlord under the following programs:

  1. Under the Federal Section 8 certificate or voucher program, the government pays part of the rent for low income families and individuals. The tenants pay approximately 30 percent of their household income for rent, and the Section 8 program pays the difference between the tenant's payment and a fair market rent.
  2. A Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) is for people aged 62 and above living in rent controlled, rent stabilized, or Mitchell-Lama units. For tenants with incomes below a threshold amount, the city pays the difference in monthly rent resulting from increases that raise rent to more than one-third of income.
  3. Advantage (Work, Child, or Fixed) provides up to two years of rent support to families with children, adult families and single adults who are exiting the homeless shelter system.
    • Families living in a homeless shelter for at least 90 days are eligible for Work Advantage once they obtain employment.
    • Families living in a homeless shelter with a child in the foster care system are eligible for Child Advantage.
    • SSI recipients living in homeless shelters are eligible for Fixed Advantage.
  4. The Public Assistance Grant is made up of the Basic Grant and the Shelter Allowance, and is administered by the Human Resources Administration (HRA). It’s meant to be used for the payment of rent and may be paid directly to the landlord. If the rent is more than the Shelter Allowance, the tenant must pay the remainder of the rent with the Basic Grant.
  5. Housing Stability Plus (HSP) is a 5-year rent subsidy program administered by the HRA to help homeless families receiving public assistance leave the shelter. The subsidy payment starts at 100% of rent and is reduced by 20% each year. The HSP program ended in 2007, but families who were enrolled still receive the subsidy until their five years are up or they are no longer eligible. This rent supplement is in addition to any shelter allowance.
  6. Employment Incentive Housing Program (EIHP) is a 2-year rent supplement program administered by the HRA to help homeless families receiving public assistance leave the shelter. Recipients must be receiving public assistance and be engaged in work activities to receive the supplement. This rent supplement is in addition to any shelter allowance.
  7. The Long Term Stayer’s Program (LTSP) is administered by the HRA and provides five years of rental assistance to families receiving public assistance who are exiting homeless shelters after extended stays. Recipients must be receiving public assistance to be eligible for LTSP. This rent supplement is in addition to any shelter allowance.
  8. Jiggetts is a rent supplement provided to public assistance recipients who are involved in court cases of eviction proceedings involving non-payment of rent.
  9. Family Eviction Prevention Program (FEPS) is a program administered by the HRA to help families with children under 18 who are facing eviction to stay in their homes. The supplement can be provided for up to five years and is in addition to any shelter allowance.
  10. Any other federal housing subsidy program not listed above.
  11. Any other state or city housing subsidy program not listed above.

Rooms. Rooms counted include whole rooms used for living purposes, such as living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, kitchens, finished attic or basement rooms, recreation rooms, permanently enclosed porches that are suitable for year-round use, and lodger's rooms. Also included are rooms used for offices by a person living in the unit.

A partially divided room, such as a dinette next to a kitchen or living room, is a separate room only if there is a partition from floor to ceiling, but not if the partition consists only of shelves or cabinets.

Not included in the count of rooms are bathrooms, halls, foyers or vestibules, balconies, closets, alcoves, pantries, strip or pullman kitchens, laundry or furnace rooms, unfinished attics or basements, other unfinished space used for storage, open porches, trailers used only as bedrooms, and offices used only by persons not living in the unit. If a room is used by occupants of more than one unit, the room is included with the unit from which it is most easily reached.

Senior Citizen Carrying Charge Increase Exemption (SCRIE). Data are limited to households with persons age 62 or over living in cooperatives. The City of New York will pay the difference between one-third of household income and an increase that raises the carrying charge above one-third in households where the householder or spouse is age 62 or over with incomes less than a threshold amount. This program is intended for residents of Mitchell-Lama cooperatives.

Single Room Occupancy (SRO) Unit. A rental unit consisting of one or two rooms, which does not provide its occupants with exclusive use of complete kitchen and/or complete bath/plumbing facilities. For example, the SRO may have a shared bath, or a partially-equipped kitchen.

Spanish/Hispanic Origin. This classification refers to whether each person occupying the housing unit is of Spanish or Hispanic origin. The following categories are identified as Spanish/Hispanic: Puerto Rican, Dominican, Cuban, South/Central American, Mexican/Mexican-American/Chicano, and Other Spanish/Hispanic.

Special Place. These are different types of living quarters that are excluded from the survey. Examples include nursing homes, prisons, rectories and dormitories. Thus, any persons residing in such places are also not included in the survey. Note that prior to 2000, rooming/boarding houses were special places, but are now housing units.

Structure Classification. New York City structure class definitions are prepared by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, Division of Housing Policy Analysis and Statistical Research.

The New York State Multiple Dwelling Law (MDL) assigns a structure class designation to all "multiple dwellings," that is, all buildings that have three or more residential dwelling units. A "class A" multiple dwelling is used, as a rule, for permanent residence purposes. A "class B" multiple dwelling is used, as a rule, transiently, as the more or less temporary home of individuals or families who are lodged without meals. In addition, the Multiple Dwelling Law distinguishes between: a) "tenements," which are pre-1929 residential structures built originally as residential buildings, b) "post-1929 multiple dwellings" which are residential structures built after 1929, c) "converted dwellings" which are multiple dwellings that have been converted from structures that were originally 1-2 family dwellings, and d) "altered dwellings" which are multiple dwellings that have been altered from structures that were used for commercial or other non-residential purposes. The structure class categories used for the 2011 New York City Housing and Vacancy Survey are based on the Multiple Dwelling Law and are defined as follows:

  • Old Law Tenement (built before 1901) - A "class A" multiple dwelling constructed before 1901 and subject to the regulations of the Tenement House Acts of 1867 and 1879. These buildings were usually designed to fit the maximum number of rooms on the standard 25' x 100' lot, with "railroad flat" floor plans, having rooms lined up like cars on a train. These plans offered little light or ventilation for interior rooms. Most of the buildings were six stories or less, with four apartments per floor. There were minimum standards regarding ventilation, fire escapes, sanitation, and basement units.
  • New Law Tenement (built 1901-1929) - A "class A" multiple dwelling constructed between 1901 and 1929 and subject to new standards for ventilation, sanitation, and fire safety contained in the Tenement House Act of 1901. Distinguished from the Old Law Tenement in terms of reduction of hazardous conditions and improved access to light and air. Typically, these structures were larger than Old Law Tenements, built on lots at least 40 feet wide, with courtyards or double sized air shafts to meet the enhanced ventilation standards.
  • Multiple Dwelling Built After 1929 (including public housing) - A "class A" multiple dwelling constructed after 1929 and subject to the regulations of the Multiple Dwelling Law of 1929. This law codified standards for high rise apartments, whether for tenements or luxury buildings. This law made "mechanical ventilation" an acceptable substitute for windows in corridors and baths, increased height and bulk limits, and legitimated the double-loaded corridor, in which a series of apartments open onto an interior hallway with no windows.
  • Apartment Hotel Built Before 1929 - A "class A" multiple dwelling constructed before 1929 that has hotel-type amenities such as a front desk, maid service, or linen service.
  • One-two Family Dwelling Converted to Apartments - A "class A" multiple dwelling that was converted from a dwelling that previously had fewer than three residential units.
  • Non-residential Building Altered to Apartments - A "class A" multiple dwelling that was altered from a non-residential building that previously had no residential units.
  • Tenement Building Used for Single Room Occupancy - A "class A" multiple dwelling with units that are being used for single room occupancy pursuant to section 248 of the Multiple Dwelling Law. Section 248 specifies the conditions under which "class A" multiple dwellings may be used for single room occupancy. Single room occupancy is the occupancy by one or two persons of a single room, or of two or more rooms which are joined together, separated from all other rooms within an apartment in a multiple dwelling, so that the occupant(s) reside separately and independently of the other occupant(s) of the same apartment. When a "class A" multiple dwelling is used wholly or in part for a single room occupancy, it remains a "class A" multiple dwelling.
  • One-two Family Dwelling Converted to Rooming House - A "class B" multiple dwelling that was converted from a dwelling that previously had fewer than three residential units. A rooming house is a multiple dwelling, other than a hotel, having fewer than thirty sleeping rooms and in which persons either individually or as families are housed for hire or otherwise with or without meals.
  • Miscellaneous Class B Structure - This includes all other "class B" multiple dwellings such as old law and new law residential apartment buildings converted for single room occupancy, but not pursuant to section 248 of the Multiple Dwelling Law; lodging houses; rooming houses; hotels; and commercial buildings altered for residential single room occupancy use. A lodging house is a multiple dwelling, other than a hotel, a rooming house, or a furnished rooming house, in which persons are housed for hire for a single night, or for less than a week at one time, or any part of which is let for any person to sleep in for any term less than a week. An inn with fewer that thirty sleeping rooms is a rooming house. A hotel is an inn having thirty or more sleeping rooms.
  • One-two Family House. A private dwelling in any building or structure designed and occupied exclusively for residence purposes by not more that two families. A building designed and occupied exclusively by one family is a single-family private dwelling. One designed for and occupied exclusively by two families is a two-family private dwelling. Private dwellings also include a series of one-family or two-family dwelling units, each of which face or is accessible to a legal street or public thoroughfare.

Sub-borough Areas. Sub-borough areas are groups of census tracts, aggregated below the county/borough level, containing at least 100,000 persons, as determined by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development and the Census Bureau, based on Census Bureau requirements. The boundaries of sub-borough areas often approximate community district boundaries; however, sub-borough areas are not the same as community districts, whose boundaries are defined by the city government. For 2011, sub-borough areas approximate the Public Use Microdata Areas (PUMAs) from the American Community Survey.

Telephone Service. The data represent households with land-line service and number of adults with a cell phone for personal use.

Temporarily Absent or on Layoff. Data on temporarily absent are presented for persons who reported not working the week prior to interview. Data are shown separately for persons reporting an official layoff or furlough and those reporting absence because of vacation, temporary illness, or involvement in a labor dispute, etc.

Tenure. A housing unit is owner-occupied if the owner or co-owner lives in the unit, even if it is mortgaged at the time of the interview. A cooperative or condominium unit is owner-occupied only if the owner or co-owner lives in it at the time of the interviewer’s visit. All other occupied housing units are classified as renter-occupied including housing units rented for cash rent and those occupied without payment of cash rent.

Toilet Breakdowns. Based on respondent's report of whether there was a time in the three month period preceding the survey when all the toilets in the apartment (house) were not working for six consecutive hours.

Type of Business/Industry Activity. Data are presented that reflect the main business/industry activity conducted by a firm. The categories are as follows:

  • Manufacturing - the making, processing, or assembly of products.
  • Wholesale trade - the buying of goods from a manufacturer and the selling to large users such as retail stores, hotel chains, hospitals, etc.
  • Retail trade - the selling of products directly to consumers; all restaurants and taverns are also included here.
  • Other - includes construction firms, government agencies, and service industries. Examples of service industries are hotels, repair shops, laundries, hair salons, advertising agencies, and stock brokerages.

Type of Heating Fuel. Four types of heating fuels were reported. Electricity is generally supplied by means of above or underground electric power lines. Utility gas is piped through underground pipes from a central system to serve the neighborhood. Fuel oil is heating oil, normally supplied by truck to a storage tank for use by the heating system. Other fuels include coal, kerosene, wood, etc.

Type of Schedule. These codes are assigned during clerical editing of the questionnaires and may be used in computer editing to assign tenure and vacancy status if these items are not reported. (This item appears on the Microdata File only.)

Type of Worker. Type of worker consists of the following categories:

  1. Private Wage and Salary Worker - FOR PROFIT company, business, or individual for wages, salary, or commission. This classification also includes compensation by tips, piece rates, or pay "in kind," if received from a non-governmental source, regardless of whether the source is a large corporation or a single individual.
  2. Private Wage and Salary Worker - NOT-FOR-PROFIT, tax exempt, or charitable organization. This category includes:
    • Employees of churches, unions, YMCAs, political parties, professional associations, non-profit hospitals, and similar organizations.
    • Persons who work for condominium and cooperative associations, other cooperative businesses, mutual and fraternal insurance companies, mutual savings banks, and credit unions.
    • Employees of foreign governments, the United Nations, or other formal international organizations controlled by foreign governments.
  3. Government Worker - federal
  4. Government Worker - state, local (city, borough, etc.) - these categories include:
    • Employees of public schools, government-owned bus lines, and government-owned utilities (by level of government).
    • Persons elected to paid offices.
    • Civilian and active duty members of the Armed Forces.
  5. Self-employed in own incorporated/unincorporated business or professional practice.
    • Own business, incorporated, refers to people who own all or most of the stock in a privately held corporation, and consider themselves self-employed.
    • Own businesses, unincorporated, refers to work for profit or fees in the person's own business, shop, office, etc. It does not include managers or other executives hired to run a business, salespersons on commission, or corporate officers. This category includes sole proprietorships and partnerships, but the company cannot be incorporated.
  6. Working without pay in a family business - persons who received no monetary compensation for their work in a family business are included in this category. In addition, persons who receive room and board as pay for work in a family business are also included here.

Utilities and Fuels. Data on amounts paid for the utility items (electricity, gas, water, and sewer) and the fuel items (oil, coal, kerosene, wood, etc.) are shown if they are used and paid separately from the rent or any condominium or maintenance fees. Amounts for electricity and gas are monthly; water and sewer, and other fuel costs are yearly.

The gas, water and sewer utility items, and fuel items used in the monthly gross rent tabulation are all two-part questions: 1) Is the item paid separately (from the rent or any condominium or maintenance fees), and 2) If it is paid separately, what is the cost (amount). However, information on electricity is asked in a three part question: 1) Is electricity paid separately (from the rent or any condominium or maintenance fees), 2) if it is paid separately, what is the cost (amount), and 3) if it is combined with the gas payment and respondent cannot give separate estimates of gas and electricity costs.

Vacancy Status. Data on the status of vacant units are presented in the following categories:

  • Vacant for rent - Includes vacant units that are for rent only; both for rent or for sale; unsold vacant units offered for rent in condominium or cooperative buildings; individually owned units offered for rent during an extended absence by the owner; and vacant units in a building offered for sale and the sample unit is offered for rent.
  • Vacant for sale - Includes only vacant units for sale to the general public.
  • Not available for rent or for sale - Includes vacant units not available for rent or for sale. See Reason Vacant Unit Not Available for a description of the reasons.

Value. Value is the respondent's estimate of how much the apartment or house/lot would sell for if it were for sale. Any nonresidential portions of the property are excluded from the estimate.

Water Leakage. The data refer to units where water has leaked into the unit other than from the unit's fixtures backing up or overflowing. Units with situations such as leaks through the ceilings or roof, or closed windows are included here.

Wheelchair Accessibility. A series of items were added in 1996 to determine if the building and sample unit were wheelchair-accessible. The field representative determined by observation or measurement if the street entry and inner lobby (width at least 32"), elevator (door width 36", cab depth 51"), and unit entrance (width 32") were accessible. Additionally, each respondent living in a building with an elevator was asked if the elevator could be reached without using steps, and, all respondents were asked whether the unit could be reached from the sidewalk outside, without using any steps.

Worked Last Week. Last week refers to the full calendar week, Sunday through Saturday before the interview. The following activities are counted as work: paid work; work for meals; lodging, supplies, etc.; work for piece rates, commissions, or tips; work in the person's own business or professional practice; work without pay in a family business; active military duty; and any part-time job such as babysitting. Work excludes work around a person's own house, unpaid babysitting, volunteer work, and school work.

Year Acquired. The year the apartment (house) was acquired is the year the householder acquired the apartment (house) outright or began making payments on the mortgage or similar loan. The year the apartment (house) was acquired is not the year the mortgage or similar loan was paid off.

Year Building Built. Data on year built were obtained from records provided by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development. Each sample unit was coded via computer based on this information.

Year Last Worked. The data represent the most recent year in which the person did any work at all, not necessarily the year the person last worked full-time.

Year Mortgage Made. This represents the year in which the most recent mortgage on an owner-occupied unit was originated.

Year Moved In. Data are presented for the year in which the householder moved into the sample unit; that is, the date of the latest move. If the householder moved out of the unit but returned later, the data refer to the date he/she moved back.

Year Moved to New York City. If householder was born outside of New York City, reports the year he/she moved to New York City. (See Immigration Status)

Year Moved to U.S. If householder was born outside of the U.S., reports the year he/she moved to the U.S. (See Immigration Status)

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | New York City Housing and Vacancy Survey (NYCHVS) |  Last Revised: 2015-03-02T11:06:46-05:00