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American Housing Survey
The American Housing Survey (AHS) collects data on the nation's housing, including apartments, single family homes, mobile homes, and vacant housing units. Unlike most surveys, the primary focus is on the housing unit; the survey does gather information on the people living in the housing units, primarily to relate the people characteristics to the housing characteristics. Since the AHS is a longitudinal survey, returning to the same housing units every year, the survey can be used to analyze the flow of households through housing.
The AHS conducts two surveys: a national survey and a metropolitan survey. The national survey gathers information on housing throughout the country and is in the field in odd-numbered years. The 2009 metropolitan survey covers households in seven metropolitan areas. A sample of housing units was selected from the decennial survey. These are updated by a sample of addresses obtained from building permits to include housing units constructed since the sample was selected. The survey goes back to the same housing units on a regular basis, recording changes in characteristics, adding and deleting units when applicable.