American Housing Survey (AHS) - Table Creator (ICPSR 36753)

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United States. Bureau of the Census

This is an external resource to which ICPSR links as a courtesy. These data are not available from ICPSR. Users should consult the data owners (via American Housing Survey (AHS) - Table Creator) directly for details on obtaining these resources.


The American Housing Survey (AHS), the most comprehensive housing survey in the U.S., provides up-to-date information on the size and composition of the housing stock in our country. This survey delivers information about the types of homes in which people are now living and the characteristics of these homes, as well as the costs of running and maintaining them. National data are collected every other year and metropolitan area data are collected on a rotating basis. The AHS is sponsored by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The AHS Table Creator gives data users the ability to create customized tables from the AHS data without having to use the Public Use File (microdata).

Like the microdata, the AHS Table Creator provides current information on a wide range of housing subjects, including size and composition of the nation's housing inventory, vacancies, fuel usage, physical condition of housing units, characteristics of occupants, equipment breakdowns, home improvements, mortgages and other housing costs, people eligible for and beneficiaries of subsidized housing, home values, and characteristics of recent movers.

For the first time since 1985, the survey selected new national and metropolitan area longitudinal samples. In addition to the "core" data, the AHS collected "topical" data using a series of topical modules. The 2015 AHS includes topical supplements on 1) the presence of arts and cultural opportunities in the community, 2) health and safety hazards in the home, 3) food insecurity, and 4) the use of housing counseling services. Data users can also explore the new national and metropolitan area longitudinal samples as well as the topical supplements using the AHS Table Creator.

Policy analysts, program managers, budget analysts, and Congressional staff use the AHS data and table creator to monitor supply and demand, as well as changes in housing conditions and costs, in order to assess housing needs. Analyses based on the AHS are used to advise the executive and legislative branches in the development of housing policies. HUD uses the AHS to improve efficiency and effectiveness and design housing programs appropriate for different target groups, such as first-time home buyers and the elderly. Academic researchers and private organizations also use AHS data in efforts of specific interest and concern to their respective communities.

The AHS is conducted every two years from May and September in odd-numbered years. HUD sometimes adjusts this schedule and/or sample depending on budget constraints. Public use microdata and reports are released approximately 12 months after data collection.

United States Department of Housing and Urban Development

The NADAC releases of the 2015 National and Metropolitan Public Use Files are forthcoming.

Before using the AHS Table Creator, data users are strongly encouraged to review the AHS Table Creator Release Notes for important information regarding the tool and data availability.

Like published tables, AHS Table Creator tabulations may not match estimates derived using the Public Use File (PUF) because the PUF uses topcoding and geographic suppressions used to protect the identities of survey respondents. Cross tabulations displaying an X, or not applicable, in published AHS tables are shown as a "." in Table Creator.

Due to changes in geographic boundaries, use caution when comparing 2015 metro estimates to prior years. Please see Summary of the Differences between the 2015 and 2013 AHS Metro Areas for more information. A guide is available for data users needing assistance with using the AHS Table Creator.

Housing units in the United States.