We have more bedrooms than people in Australia.
In fact around 7 million bedrooms (one quarter of all bedrooms) are unoccupied.
This is one of the many intersting stats from the 2016 Census
There’s been lot’s of analysis of the recently released Census data and one of my favourite commentators, demographer Bernard Salt wrote an intersting pice on the Australian about the relationship between the number of bedrooms and the people of Australian.
In August last year the population stood at 23.4 million, up 9 per cent on the 2011 figure.
The number of private dwellings was 9.9 million, while the number of bedrooms was 27 million.
The bedroom and the private-dwelling growth rate match the population growth rate at 9 per cent; no one should be squishing up in the bedroom (unless they really want to says Salt).
Salt suggests that allowing for those Aussies who share a bedroom (couples and siblings sharing a room) it is likley that about a quarter of all bedrooms are unoccupied.
This equates to seven million bedrooms that are waiting for young children to arrive or for older children to return to the nest, or are designed to accommodate the odd visiting relative or friend.
Based on census figures, we are producing about 157,000 private dwellings and 438,000 net new bedrooms every year.
Population growth has averaged 379,000 a year since 2011.
On these figures, Australia’s unused bedroom supply is growing by no fewer than 59,000 a year, or about 1100 a week.
The latest census reveals there are 1,200 private homes in Australia with 30-plus bedrooms.
Sure the typical three-bedroom dwelling still dominates, but two-bedroom apartments are growing faster with stock up 5 per cent since 2011.
Three-bedroom houses are up barely 1 per cent in the same timeframe.
However, the number of four-bedroom houses is up 12 per cent since 2011 while the number of five, six, seven and even eight-bedroom houses is up by more than 20 per cent in the past five years.
Of course all the bedrooms in these big houses aren’t being used as bedroom.
It’s just that we like our space and have home offices, studies, media rooms etc.
The ownership pattern of housing follows a familiar narrative.
- One and two-bedroom accommodation is most commonly rented.
- Three, four and five-bedroom housing is usually owned outright or with a mortgage.
- Peak renting usually occurs in the early to mid-20s; ownership kicks in progressively from the 30s.
- More than 80 per cent of 70-somethings and 80-somethings own their three or four-bedroom homes.
- The largest pooling of surplus bedrooms is associated with the retired population.
Read more at The Australian
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