Marital history and home ownership: Evidence from Australia
The relative cost of owning and renting housing and housing affordability have been clearly established as important determinants of home ownership. But the roles of marital status and history have been largely ignored. In this paper we show that both current marital status and past history affect ownership. Past history matters because wealth accumulation is greater among couple households than singles owing largely to economies of scale in housing consumption. Moreover, wealth is lost upon divorce. In effect, past marital history affects the affordability of owner housing. This result is shown in the estimation of model explaining wealth, leverage and tenure choice using Australian datasets.
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