Journal of Housing and the Built Environment

, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 281–298 | Cite as

Home-ownership and family formation

Original Paper


In Western countries, home-ownership and family formation are closely connected. From most research on the transition to home-ownership, one gets the impression that the association between family formation and home-ownership is positive: family formation seems to speed up the process of acquiring a home in several countries. However, it has also been argued that there might be a negative association between home-ownership and family formation at the individual or household level, because the cost of home-ownership might compete with the cost of rearing children. And it has also been found that those countries in Europe with the highest levels of home-ownership are also those with the lowest fertility. The aim of this paper is to reconcile these seemingly contradicting findings on the association between home-ownership and family formation by developing a theoretical argument comprising both the micro level of individuals and households and the macro level of countries.


Home-ownership Family formation 


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This research was supported by NWO, Aspasia grant no. 015.000.013. The author thanks colleagues from the University of Amsterdam and Utrecht University as well as participants of the 2005 PAA Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America and␣2005 Conference of the European Network for Housing Research for their valuable comments.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geography, Planning and International Development StudiesUniversity of AmsterdamAmsterdamNetherlands

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