New unoccupied dwelling data from the 2016 Census is now available in GapMaps, enabling businesses to more accurately analyse population and trade area demand.
Trade area analysis which relies on dwelling count data can be misleading. The 2016 Australian Census identified that around 11% of dwellings are vacant. In some areas that percentage is much higher meaning that trade area potential can be easily overstated. The areas with the highest percentage of unoccupied dwellings tends to be in seaside ‘holiday home’ townships such as Apollo Bay (Vic) and Venus Bay (Vic) which are both >70% unoccupied. In urbanised areas the highest unoccupied dwelling percentages tend to be in areas with large numbers of apartments like Fortitude Valley (Qld) at 16%, and Docklands (Vic) and East Perth (WA) at 19%.
Correctly interpreting ABS data is essential for accurate trade area analysis and the distinction between households and dwellings is important. A dwelling may be occupied or unoccupied whereas a household is a reference to an occupied dwelling.
The unoccupied housing layer compliments a range of other GapMaps functionality, including the GapMaps’ Demographics Report, which provides a snapshot of key insights for different locations. Additionally, thematic mapping in our platform allows users to quickly identify the suburbs with the highest proportion of unoccupied housing.
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