MORE Australians are taking up apartment living according to Census data released this week by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
About 10 per cent of all people in Australia spent Census night in an apartment and there is now one apartment occupied for every five houses, compared to one to seven in 1991.
Over the past 25 years, the number of occupied apartments (including flats and units) increased by 78 per cent to 1,214,372 dwellings and there has been an increase in high-rise living with 38 per cent of apartments in four or more storey blocks.
This figure was 19 per cent in 1991.
Nearly half of all the occupied apartments were in NSW (47 per cent), making up 21 per cent of all occupied private dwellings in the state.
By comparison, 5 per cent of Australia’s apartments were in WA, making up just 6 per cent of the state’s occupied private dwellings.
Apartment living was concentrated within Australia’s major capital cities and Perth was home to 92 per cent of WA apartments.
The top three regions for apartment occupation were Perth city, Wembley-West Leederville-Glendalough and Subiaco-Shenton Park.
The Census data showed that for all apartments across Australia, 13 per cent were owned outright, 15 per cent were owned with a mortgage and well over half (59 per cent) were being rented.
In contrast, 34 per cent of separate houses were owned outright, 38 per cent owned with a mortgage, and 21 per cent rented.
Apartment residents were mainly in the 25-34 age group (29 per cent), another 11 per cent were children aged 0-14 years, up slightly from the 10 per cent share recorded a decade earlier.
The median age of males and females who usually lived in an apartment remained the same at 33 years.
People living in apartments were more likely to be female (51 per cent) than male (49 per cent) and women were slightly more likely to be living in apartments in their later years.
Compared with the overall population living in private dwellings, in 2016 one in five (21 per cent) people aged 25-34 years were apartment residents.
Nearly one in eight (12 per cent) people aged 85 years or more and 35-44 years were also apartment residents.
Younger people were also quite prominent; more than one in ten (11 per cent) of Australia’s youth (aged 15-24) lived in an apartment, as did nearly one in 10 (9 per cent) of children to four years old.