Census is snapshot of your 'hood

If you live in Awapuni West, odds are you are married, own the house you live in and are employed as a professional.

Census 2013 figures show 80.5 per cent of households in the suburb live in homes they own or hold in a family trust, which compares with 62.4 per cent for Palmerston North as a whole.

Those who do rent in the suburb pay a median weekly rent of $260, meaning half pay more and half pay less.

More than half of residents - 55 per cent - are married.

In contrast, 45.2 per cent of households in nearby West End live in their own homes and just 33.7 per cent of residents - one in three - are married.

These and other facts likely to satisfy anyone curious about their neighbourhoods and how they compare with others have been made available on the Statistics New Zealand website.

Called QuickStats about a place, the interactive publication draws from census and other official statistics to provide in-depth information about areas that can be drilled down to regions, districts, cities and even suburbs.

Information includes the number of people and dwellings, age and sex, cultural diversity, relationship status, qualifications, and transport, among others.

"This new publication lets Kiwis explore their communities - from who lives nearby and how they live, to local businesses and housing stock," said Census 2013 general manager Gareth Meech.

"It will also help people understand how things in their neighbourhood have changed over time."

The tool provided profiles of more than 2000 communities.

However, while it may satisfy the curious, it is aimed at helping decision-makers.

"The beauty of census is it offers a snapshot of New Zealand, and we can now use that data nationally and locally to help shape communities and inform decision-making," Statistics Minister Nicky Wagner said.

Manawatu Standard