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From AEAStat staff:
 
The Census Bureau has asked OMB to approve the renewal of the monthly Housing Vacancy Survey (HVS) through mid-2023 and invites economists to submit comments to OMB by April 20 on HVS value, plans, methods, and data products.  
 
Federal Register notice and invitation https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2020-03-19/pdf/2020-05716.pdf#page=1
Census submission to OMB -- forms, supporting statement, and comment button https://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=202003-0607-003  Click IC List for survey instrument, Supporting Statement for plans, methods, schedule.
 
The HVS is conducted in conjunction with the CPS for which the universe is 140 million housing units. The Census Bureau selects a sample of approximately 72,000 housing units from this universe each month. Units are interviewed for the HVS if it is vacant and intended for year-round occupancy, as determined during the CPS interview. Approximately 6,500 units in the CPS sample meet these criteria each month and perform the interview; these units represent almost 13 million year-round vacant units in 2019 across the United States each month. Based on past experience, a response rate of approximately 86 percent is expected.

Confidence intervals for the quarterly rental vacancy rate, homeowner vacancy rate and homeownership rate are 0.3 percent, 0.1 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively. We deem this degree of accuracy sufficient for data analysis and publication purposes.   
 
These data provide the only quarterly statistics on rental vacancy rates and home ownership rates for the United States, the four census regions, inside versus outside metropolitan areas (MSAs), the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the 75 largest MSAs.  We obtain the rental and homeowner vacancy rate calculations from the data we collect in question >TENUR-scrn< on the CPS instrument, and question >HVSSTA< on the HVS portion of the CPS instrument (see Attachments A and B).  Private and public sector organizations use these rates extensively to gauge and analyze the housing market.  

In addition, the rental vacancy rate is a component of the index of leading economic indicators published by the Department of Commerce.
 
For AEA members wishing to provide comments, "A Primer on How to Respond to Calls for Comment on Federal Data Collections" is available at https://www.aeaweb.org/content/file?id=5806  AEA staff support is available at areamer@gwu.edu and 202-510-3681.

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