Residential Vacancy Rate

What is the indicator?

The residential vacancy rate is the percentage of residential units that are unoccupied, or vacant, in a given year. The U.S. Census Bureau defines occupied housing units as “owner-occupied” or “renter-occupied.” Vacant housing units are not classified by tenure in this way, as they are not occupied by an owner or renter.

 

What does the data say? Are there any notable trends?

 

Residential Vacancy Rate

 Champaign County      
Total Housing UnitsOccupied Housing UnitsVacant Housing UnitsResidential Vacancy Rate
UnitsMargin of ErrorUnitsMargin of ErrorUnitsMargin of Error
200580,549N/A73,9151,4766,6341,4768.2%
200682,40218473,9601,6338,4421,65810.2%
200783,92318076,8551,3627,0681,3548.4%
200885,2422,32178,0733,0007,1691,5678.4%
200985,9951,85878,0232,6587,9721,6349.3%
201087,6442,80578,5013,8149,1432,06210.4%
201188,1301,21878,9932,2289,1371,95410.4%
201288,2401,25380,0501,9308,1901,4469.3%
201388,54797378,5211,98110,0261,87511.3%
201489,2091,08381,3472,0157,8621,9728.8%
201590,4821,01479,6732,24010,8091,92411.9%

 

The residential vacancy rate in Champaign County has fluctuated between 8% and 12% since 2005. However, this rate was calculated using the American Community Survey’s estimated number of vacant houses per year, and due to the large margins of error, that number is not statistically different from year to year. Thus, we cannot establish a trend for this data.

 

Why is this important?/Why did we include it in our set of indicators?

The residential vacancy rate serves as an indicator of the condition of the area’s housing market. Low residential vacancy rates indicate that demand for housing is high compared to the housing supply. However, the aggregate residential vacancy rate is lacking in granularity. For example, the housing market for rental units in the area and the market for buying a unit in the same area may be very different, and the aggregate rate will not show those distinct conditions. Furthermore, the vacancy rate may be high, or low, for a variety of reasons. A high vacancy rate may result from a falling population, but it may also result from a recent construction spree that added many units to the total stock.

 

Where did we get the data, and how often is it released?

The residential vacancy rate data shown here was calculated using the estimated total housing units and estimated vacant housing units from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, which are released annually.

As with any datasets that are estimates rather than exact counts, it is important to take into account the margins of error (listed in the column beside each figure) when drawing conclusions from the data.

 

Sources: U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2015 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002, generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (19 September 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2014 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2013 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table SB25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2012 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2010 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2009 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2008 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2007 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2006 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).; U.S. Census Bureau; American Community Survey, 2005 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Table B25002; generated by CCRPC staff; using American FactFinder; (16 March 2016).