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Housing transitions through the life course

Housing transitions through the life course: Aspirations, needs and policy

Andrew Beer
Debbie Faulkner
Chris Paris
Terry Clower
Copyright Date: 2011
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  • Book Info
    Housing transitions through the life course
    Book Description:

    The housing we live in shapes individual access to jobs, health, well being and communities. There are also substantial differences between generations regarding the type of housing they aspire to live in, their attitudes to housing costs, the nature of their households and their attitudes to different tenures. This important contribution to the literature draws upon research from the UK, Australia and the USA to show how lifetime attitudes to housing have changed, with new population dynamics driving the market and a greater emphasis on consumption. It also considers how the global financial crisis has differentially affected housing markets across the globe, with variable impacts on the long term housing transitions of different populations.

    eISBN: 978-1-84742-936-0
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. iii-iii)
  3. List of figures and tables
    (pp. iv-v)
  4. Notes about the authors
    (pp. vi-vi)
  5. Acknowledgements
    (pp. vii-vii)
  6. Preface
    (pp. viii-x)
    Andrew Beer and Debbie Faulkner
  7. ONE Housing markets and policy in the 21st century
    (pp. 1-14)

    Housing remains one of the fundamental pillars of both life and lifestyle for us as individuals. Housing is also important within our economies and societies as it is a source of employment within the building industry, an object of public policy attention and action, and a focus of concern for debates around fairness or inclusion within society. This book considers the role housing plays in the lives of individuals and households through their life course, and along the way it confronts issues about the part housing plays within society, economy and culture. Most writing on housing takes a cross-sectional view...

  8. TWO Housing over the life course: housing histories, careers, pathways and transitions
    (pp. 15-38)

    Change in the way individuals and households live in, use and consume housing over the course of their lives has been, and remains, a dynamic field of housing research. While Kemeny (1992) and others (Clapham, 2005a; O’Neil, 2008) have decried the failure of housing studies to engage with contemporary sociological theory, researchers from across the globe have quietly amassed a significant body of work that sheds light on the changing relationship between households and the dwellings in which they live over their life course (see, for example, Abramson, 2008; Gram-Hanssen and Bech-Danielsen, 2008; Mandic, 2008). This chapter sets out to...

  9. THREE Housing transitions and housing policy: international context and policy transfer
    (pp. 39-60)
    Chris Paris, Terry Clower, Andrew Beer and Debbie Faulkner

    In the late 1980s and early 1990s the American philosopher and political economist Francis Fukuyama triggered considerable debate with his argument that with the advent of Western liberal democracy humanity had reached the ‘end of history’ as further sociocultural evolution appeared unlikely. Fukuyama’s (1992) work has been critiqued heavily, but his ideas highlight the ways in which policies and social practices appear to have converged across nations. Similarly, there are strong international parallels in many aspects of housing policy and the operation of housing markets. The globalisation of financial markets has contributed to the apparent integration of housing markets around...

  10. FOUR The housing transitions of younger adults
    (pp. 61-74)

    The transition from the parental home to independent living is one of the most significant changes to occur in the housing circumstances of any individual. For some, the first living arrangements away from the family are a staging point toward further change, while others move directly from the parental household to housing that will be prominent over much of their lives. There is evidence that the housing decisions and circumstances of younger households are changing: as more young adults stay in the parental home for longer, access to home purchase is delayed, and relationship formation is postponed – especially when...

  11. FIVE Housing in mid life: consolidation, opportunity and risk
    (pp. 75-92)

    In the traditional representation of a housing career a discussion of mid-life housing transitions would almost seem unwarranted. Mid life has conventionally been seen as a period of consolidation and stability in the housing of individuals and households. In the past, at this stage of life, traditional patterns of behaviour, stable employment careers, and the demands of childrearing contributed to limited movements within the housing market. The middle years of life have been associated with the gradual transition from home purchase to outright ownership, accompanied by some limited upward movement through the housing market to better accommodate the needs of...

  12. SIX Housing transitions in later life
    (pp. 93-112)

    Stereotypically, old age has been viewed as a time of reduced income, incapacity, frailty and dependency. This perspective has directed the development of policies and planning for an older population and resulted in a focus on the provision of retirement incomes and the delivery of care. Often, little attention has been directed to other aspects of life, such as the suitability of housing and the functioning of the communities in which older people live. This common image of old age is at odds with contemporary trends, as the citizens of advanced economies live longer than ever before, enjoy a better...

  13. SEVEN Housing and disability: a 21st-century phenomenon
    (pp. 113-134)

    Conventional accounts of housing careers and even housing pathways present, in some ways, a monochromatic view of households and the housing they occupy. The concept of a housing career holds cogency for young, middle-class household members of Anglo-Celtic backgrounds born in the 1950s, but sheds little light on the more complex realities of households in the 21st century. One of the areas where this gap is most acute is in our understanding of the relationship between disability, households and housing. In most developed economies over the last 30 years there has been a profound move away from institutional housing for...

  14. EIGHT Housing transitions, economic restructuring and the marginalised
    (pp. 135-154)
    Andrew Beer, Debbie Faulkner and Chris Paris

    In his path-breaking bookSocial Justice and the Citythe eminent geographer David Harvey (1973) observed that ‘the rich command space; the poor are trapped by it’. A similar observation applies to contemporary housing markets: those able to command resources have unprecedented levels of choice and opportunities for consumption, while the poor and marginalised within society are confronted by an increasingly regressive system of housing provision. The retreat from direct government intervention in housing supply is evident in many nations (already discussed in Chapter Three), and the move to ‘workfare’ models of welfare has coincided with a crisis of housing...

  15. NINE Conclusion: negotiating the housing market over the next decades
    (pp. 155-168)

    Housing remains central to life in the 21st century: it is a major determinant of well-being, it provides a mechanism for wealth accumulation, it offers an avenue for self-expression, it is a carrier of social status and it carries significant costs for both individuals and society. It can also serve to reinforce inequality in society and either catapult individuals into adversity or further reinforce the marginal position of disadvantaged groups. ThroughoutHousing Transitionswe have argued that the relationship between households and their housing has changed over the last four decades and that an ongoing recasting of this relationship is...

  16. References
    (pp. 169-192)
  17. Index
    (pp. 193-198)
  18. Back Matter
    (pp. 199-199)