Statistics New Zealand, Tatauranga Aotearoa

Census Test

Household Form

Dwelling Form

Individual Form

Household Form 

My house is in the country and it does not have a street number. What address should I give? 

We need to know the actual location of your dwelling so please include the street or road name and rural locality of your house.
If you have a RAPID number, include that in the address.


Can I give my rural delivery (RD) number as my address?

No. We need to know the actual location of your dwelling so please include the street or road name and rural locality of your house.


I am not at home on Census Test night, 4 April 2017. What address should I give?

If the place you are going to has materials for this Census Test, you can to complete a form there and use your home address.
If there are no Census Test materials where you are staying, you do not need to participate in this Census Test.


My spouse is working night shift on Census Test night and will not return home until 3am on 5 April 2017. How do I list them on the Household Summary Page?

Please give their name and select 'yes' for people who usually live at the address. 


My child, who usually lives with me, is away on Census Test night. How do I list them in the Household Summary Page?

Please list them as a usual resident and select them as 'away' on Census Test night.


My parents use a granny flat on my property but share our facilities (cooking, dining, bathroom etc.). They'll be in their granny flat on Census Test night. Do I include them as staying at my address on Tuesday, 4 April 2017?

Yes - if your parents share your facilities (for example, cooking, dining, bathroom), and they're present on Census Test night, then they should be counted.  


My partner lives here sometimes but they are away from our home on Census Test night. Do I count them as usually living here?

If your partner considers their usual residence is with you and they are away from your home on Census Test night, please list them as a person who usually lives at the address, but is away on the night of Tuesday, 4 April 2017.


My partner lives here sometimes, but considers their usual residence somewhere else. They are visiting on the night of 4 April 2017.

If your partner considers their usual residence is elsewhere, and they are at your home on Tuesday, 5 July 2016, then please give their name in the question about visitors at your address.


Why do I need to list all the absent people in my dwelling?

We need to account for every person associated with your dwelling. Please make sure everyone absent is noted on the list.


Why do I need to list all the people in my dwelling on the night of the Census Test? 

We need to know how many people will be present in your dwelling on Census Test night, Tuesday, 4 April 2017.

This information is used to produce family and household data.


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Dwelling form

Who has to fill in a Dwelling Form?

We would like the People’s Panel participant in each dwelling to complete a form for that dwelling.


Why do I need to list all the people in my dwelling on the night of the Census Test?

We need to know how many people are present in your dwelling on the night of the Census Test, Tuesday, 4 April 2017.
This information is used to produce family and household data.


How do I decide who usually lives at this address?


  • children away at boarding school.

  • people who are away on holiday, away for work, in hospital for a short time, etc.

Don’t count:

  • university or other tertiary students who live somewhere else for most of the year.


What counts as joined?

Mark ‘yes’ if:

  • this dwelling is attached to another dwelling, business, or shop by at least one wall.
  • this dwelling has another dwelling, business, or shop above or below it. 


My house is not joined to any other houses. How do I answer the question on joined dwellings? 

If your house stands alone and is not attached to another house you should select 'no'.


I live in a self-contained unit in a retirement complex that is joined to other units. How should I answer the question on joined dwellings?

If your unit is self-contained, (you have the facilities to prepare your own meals and do your own washing) and is attached to one or more other units, select 'yes'. 


What counts as a storey?


  • all levels above ground, including carports and garages above ground level.
  • all levels above ground in apartment buildings, including levels that have shops, businesses, or car parking.

 Don’t count:

  • levels below ground.
  • mezzanine floors.
  • split levels.


I live in an apartment. Do I count all the storeys in the building?

Yes. If the dwelling you live in is part of a larger building, you should count the total number of storeys in the whole building.


What is a family trust?

A family trust is a special way of owning property such as a home. The home is owned by a group of people, not an individual.
The family trust arrangement will be set out in a legal document, usually called a trust deed.


What counts as owning or partly owning this dwelling?

Select ‘yes’ if:

  • you or someone else living here owns the dwelling, even if you don’t own the land

  • the dwelling owned is a moveable dwelling such as a caravan, boat, tent or motorhome, even if it has been bought under hire purchase or some other financial loan agreement

  • the dwelling was purchased under unit title, stratum title, licence to occupy, or composite leasehold. This may include self-care flats, townhouses, apartments, or units in a retirement complex.

Select ‘no’ if you are occupying this dwelling under a rent-to-buy or similar agreement.


What counts as making mortgage payments?

Select ‘yes’ if you are on a short-term mortgage repayment holiday.

Select ‘no’ if:

  • you have taken a ‘reverse’ or ‘equity release’ mortgage.

  • the debt for this dwelling is not a mortgage (for example, hire purchase or financial loan for a boat or caravan).


How should I answer if my lounge is also used as a bedroom?

Rooms used for more than one purpose should be counted only once.

Count it as a bedroom if there is no other bedroom in this dwelling.

Count it as a lounge if there are other bedrooms in this dwelling.


Do I count the sleep-out (furnished as a bedroom)?

If the sleep-out is furnished as a bedroom only, and is used regularly or occasionally by members of your household or visitors to your household, please include it in your count of bedrooms.


Do I count the caravan as a bedroom?

If the caravan is next to your home and is used as a bedroom by members of your household who live in the main dwelling, please count it as a bedroom. 

If the caravan is used just for holidays, do not count the caravan as a bedroom.


How do I count my attic?

If the attic is not furnished as one of the listed rooms, please do not count it.

If the attic is furnished as one of the listed rooms (for example, bedroom) please count the attic as that type of room.


My house is open plan. How do I count the rooms?

Count open-plan rooms like this: kitchen-lounge- dining is three rooms; kitchen-dining is two rooms.


Why do you want to know how my dwelling is heated?

Information on heating in dwellings is used with other information to predict energy needs throughout New Zealand, to plan distribution, and to monitor trends in energy efficiency and conservation.


How should I answer the heating question?

If you use more than one type of heating, select the type of heating you use for the greatest amount of time throughout the year.

If you use two or more heating types equally often, select the type of heating you use most often in your lounge or living room.

If you never use any form of heating in this dwelling, select ‘don’t use any form of heating’.

Does the warmth of the sun count as 'other' for heating my dwelling?

No. If you use the sun coming through the window to heat the house, but do not have any equipment for storing and distributing this heat, do not select 'other'.


How should I answer if heating is available in this dwelling but I don't use it?

Select 'don't use any form of heating', if you don't use your heating, for example, because of cost.


What if my main way to heat the house is not listed?

Select 'other' and enter your answer in the response space provided.


What vehicles should I count as ‘available for use’?


  • vehicles belonging to people who usually live here but are temporarily away.

  • vehicles that are temporarily out of order or under repair.

  • vehicles that are usable but at the moment have no current registration or warrant of fitness (WoF).

Don't count:

  • vehicles likely to be off the road for several months.

  • vehicles that can be used only for work or to get to and from work.


How should I answer if I have to go outside my dwelling to cook, get water to drink, or use a bathroom?

Only select what you have inside your dwelling.

Select ‘none of these’ if none of the things listed are available inside your dwelling.


How should I answer if one or more of the showers, baths, or toilets in my dwelling cannot be used?

Select ‘shower or bath’ if there is at least one shower or bath in working condition in this dwelling.

Select ‘toilet’ if there is at least one toilet in working condition in this dwelling.


I have a composting toilet. Should I select ‘toilet’?

Select ‘toilet’ if your composting toilet is in working condition.


I get electricity by using solar power. Does this count as ‘electricity supply’?

Yes – select ‘electricity supply’.


How do I answer if my bedding or furniture feels or smells damp?

This shows that your dwelling is damp. Select one of the ‘yes’ options.


Why do you want to know if there is mould inside my dwelling that is larger than an A4 sheet of paper?

We are testing whether we can ask questions in the census that will help build a picture of housing quality.

Collecting information on mould covering an area larger than an A4 sheet of paper is a useful way of collecting information that can help assess health risks at regional and national levels.


If I have mould in my dwelling, what mould should I count/exclude?

Select ‘yes’ if you have mould amounts larger than an A4 size sheet of paper:

  • on walls, ceilings, floors, behind or under furniture, white ware, curtains etc.
  • if the total area of combined smaller patches is larger than an A4 sheet of paper.
  • that reappears after cleaning.

Select ‘no’ if:

  • you can only smell it, but cannot see the mould.
  • you have mould on cupboards, wardrobes, drawers and clothing.
  • there is mould in a shed or garage, unless if you live in it (then select 'yes').
  • mould in the attic, unless if the attic is lived in (then select 'yes').
  • the total area of combined smaller patches is smaller than a A4 sheet of paper.


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Individual Form

Does everyone in my house have to complete a form?

For this test, we would like everybody spending the night in this dwelling on Tuesday, 4 April 2017, to fill in an Individual Form, including babies, children and visitors.

Why are you asking these questions if this is just a test?

This test will help us to check that new and changed questions are easy to understand and complete.
Your participation will help us determine if these questions are ready to be included in the 2018 Census.

Taking part in this test is voluntary, and we really appreciate your help.


Why do you need my name?

Names are used to match the Individual Forms to people listed on the Dwelling Form staying at this dwelling on Census Test night.
For this online test, you are only asked to enter your first name.


I am not sure of my age or date of birth. What should I do?

Please try to estimate your age and date of birth.


Why do you ask my date of birth and not just my age?

Your date of birth is a more accurate measure of your age than just your current age in years.


Why is there an intersex category and why should this be used?

Sex is the distinction between males and females based on biological differences in sexual characteristics.
For some individuals it is not possible to be identified as male or female from their biological sexual characteristics.

'Intersex' should only be selected when your biological sex is not distinctly male or female.
If you have undergone a sex change or reassignment, you should select the sex that you are now.


I have had a sex change since birth. How do I answer the question about my sex?

Give the sex that you are now.


I am undergoing sex change procedures. How do I answer the question about my sex?

If you are living as the sex you are taking steps toward, give that sex. Otherwise, give your current sex.


I live in the country and do not have a street number. What address should I give for my usual residence?

We need to know the actual location of your dwelling so please include the street or road name and rural locality of your house.  


Which address do I give as my usual residence?

If you usually live overseas and will be staying in New Zealand for less than 12 months, give the name of your home country. Otherwise, give your New Zealand address.

If you usually live in New Zealand, follow these guidelines to give the right address:

  • if you are a primary or secondary school student at boarding school, give your home address.
  • if you are a tertiary student, give the address where you live during term.
  • if you live in more than one dwelling, give the address you most consider to be your home.
  • if you spend equal amounts of time at different addresses, give only one of those addresses - your Census Test night location.

If you will be staying in New Zealand for fewer than 12 months, give your home country.


Why do you want to know about my ethnic group or groups?

Ethnicity statistics count the number of people identifying with different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Understanding where these groups are and how they change over time helps the government, businesses and community organisations to plan policies and services in areas such as health and education. People also use this information to learn more about their communities.

An ethnic group is made up of people who have some or all of the following:

  • a shared culture, such as traditions or ways of doing things, customs, beliefs or language.
  • a common ancestry or history.
  • a similar geographic, tribal or clan origin.

Examples of ethnic groups are: Māori, Samoan, Irish, Iraqi, and Filipino.


I am of Cook Island Maori descent – how should I answer the Māori descent question?

If you are of Cook Island Maori descent, select ‘no’ unless you are also of New Zealand Māori descent.


List of Iwi

To help you find your iwi, a list of iwi can be found here.

I am legally registered in a civil union. Which option should I select?

If you are legally registered in a civil union, select ‘my wife or husband or partner or de facto'.

What do you mean by civil union?

A civil union is a legally registered relationship that in New Zealand has an equivalent legal status to marriage.
A marriage formalised by a non-religious or civil ceremony is not a civil union.
To be in a civil union you and your partner must have had a ceremony and your relationship must have been legally registered as a civil union.


What do you mean by legally registered marital/civil union status?

This question is only concerned with legally registered marital/civil union status.

  • If you are living with a partner as a couple but are not legally married or registered in a civil union, each of you should select the answer that fits your own legal marital/civil union status.
    While long-term ‘de facto’ relationships now have legal rights and 
    obligations, these relationships are not legally registered.
  • A marriage formalised by a non-religious or civil ceremony is not a civil union – see here.
  • If you are permanently separated but still married or registered in a civil union, select ‘I am permanently separated from my legal husband/wife/civil union partner’.
    You do not need to have gone through any legal separation process.


Why do you want to know about my sexual orientation?

Sexual orientation statistics will provide government agencies and service providers, particularly within health care and education, with better information to help them make accurate decisions about funding and service needs across New Zealand.

The information you provide in this test will be kept confidential.


Why do you want to know my income?

Income statistics are used for developing social and economic policy, research and monitoring programmes.  The information you provide in this test will be kept confidential.

  • If you and your spouse/partner earn income jointly, only include your part of that income.
  • If you received Working for Families payments (including family tax credit, in-work tax credit, minimum family tax credit and parental tax credit), select ‘other government benefits...’.
  • If you received homestay or child support payments, select ‘other sources of income...’.
  • If you did piecework, select ‘wages, salary, commissions, bonuses, etc...’.

Count any payments that are taken out of your income before you get it, such as repayments of student loans, union fees, fines or child support.

Don't count loans (including student loans), inheritances, sale of household or business assets, lottery wins, matrimonial/civil union/de facto property settlements or one-off lump sum payments.

Don't count money given by members of the same household to each other. For example, pocket money given to children, or money given for housekeeping expenses by a flatmate.

If you know your weekly or fortnightly income after tax, use this table to work out your annual income before tax.

Annual income (before tax)

 after tax weekly income 


 after tax fortnightly income 


 before tax annual income 


up to 86

up to 172

1 – 5,000

87 – 172

173 – 344

5,001 – 10,000

173 – 257

345 – 514

10,001 – 15,000

258 – 336

515 – 672

15,001 – 20,000

337 – 415

673 – 831

20,001 – 25,000

416 – 495

832 – 990

25,001 – 30,000

496 – 574

991 – 1,148

30,000 – 35,000

575 – 653

1,149 – 1,307

35,001 – 40,000

654 – 807

1,308 – 1,615

40,001 – 50,000

808 – 942

1,616 – 1,884

50,001 – 60,000

943 – 1,077

1,885 – 2,153

60,001 – 70,000

1,078 – 1,463

2,154 – 2,926

70,001 – 100,000

1,464 – 2,107

2,927 – 4,215

100,001 – 150,000





Why do you want to know where I work?

This information is used for measuring traffic flows and for planning transport services. It helps to work out daytime populations in specific areas for civil defence, and provides a measure of the number of people who work at home. The information you provide in this test will be kept confidential.

If you mostly worked away from home and had no fixed workplace address, enter the address of the depot, headquarters or reporting point you operated from.

If you mostly worked away from home and had no fixed reporting point, but travelled from your home to various work locations, enter the box with NO FIXED ADDRESS.


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