Household changes and diversity in housing consumption at older ages in Scotland
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This paper contributes to understanding housing adjustments in later life by investigating the role of four key lifecourse transitions experienced by older individuals and their households, namely changes in health, retirement, union transitions and adult children leaving the household. Using data from a representative sample of the Scottish population for the decade 2001–2011, the study examines who moves and, for movers, whether they adjust their housing size in response to changes in their personal and household circumstances. In particular, the study explores diversity in housing consumption at older ages by investigating whether the triggers of upsizing or downsizing differ across tenure groups. The majority of older adults in Scotland do not change their place of residence during the study decade. For the minority who do move, all four lifecourse transitions are significant triggers for residential relocation but there is considerable diversity across the two major tenure groups in the influence of household changes on their housing consumption adjustments. In both tenure groups, however, the presence of children in the household is associated with upsizing and is a significant impediment to downsizing. Given the relative rootedness of older parents with co-resident adult children and their propensity to upsize rather than downsize if they move, our findings raise concerns over the interdependencies between younger and older generations in the housing market.
Fiori , F , Graham , E & Feng , Z 2017 , ' Household changes and diversity in housing consumption at older ages in Scotland ' Ageing & Society , vol First View . DOI: 10.1017/S0144686X17000873
Ageing & Society
© Cambridge University Press 2017. This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
This research was funded by ESRC Secondary Data Analysis Initiative, Grant number ES/K003747/1.
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