The NSHS is a biennial survey of social housing tenants which complements administrative data collected by social housing providers and includes information on tenants and their social housing experiences.

Collection details

Temporal coverage

from 30 June 1996 to 2016

Geographical coverage

National and state and territory

Data availability

  • Publications
  • Summary tables published in electronic form
  • Statistics
  • Client specified tables on request which may be subject to data provider approval (charges apply)
  • Restricted unit record access subject to Ethics Committee approval and/or the agreement of all relevant data custodians in all states and territories (charges may apply)
  • Restrictions and limitations govern the availability or use of data in this holding.

Data scope

Participants are randomly sampled from social housing programs e.g. Public Housing (PH), State Owned and Managed Indigenous Housing (SOMIH) and Community Housing (CH).

The data collection has evolved over time. Changes have occurred to the survey methodology including survey content. In particular, prior to 2010, the survey content differed slightly across programs, reflecting different areas of interest in each program. Since 2012, the adoption of more consistent survey instruments has enabled greater data comparability across social housing programs.



Metadata information and data quality statement (DQS)

National Social Housing Survey, 2016 DQS

External links and information 

National Social Housing Survey report

Housing Assistance in Australia

Report on Government Services

Australia's Welfare