Stockholm University
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Splitting up late: housing changes around the time of divorce for older men and women in Sweden

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posted on 2024-02-23, 05:50 authored by Juta KawalerowiczJuta Kawalerowicz, Marianne Abramsson, Linda KridahlLinda Kridahl, Jani TurunenJani Turunen

The rapid rise in late-life divorce observed in many Western countries has become a subject of attention for demographers. This development not only poses challenges for researchers trying to understand its causes but also generates economic vulnerabilities among older adults, for example in terms of housing. In this paper, we use Swedish register data to examine housing shifts amidst divorce for those aged 60 and over. Using data on the discontinuation of marriages or civil partnerships between 1995 and 2013 we identify 32,000 late-life divorces. In addition, to account for possible moves arising in anticipation and as a consequence of divorce, we trace residential location and housing states up to 3 years before and after divorce. We look at gender differences in the probability of residential mobility, distances moved, as well as the probability of ownership and rental forms of tenancy. We find that women are more likely to move and that they move further distances from the marital home. Our study also sheds light on gender differences concerning late-life divorce and its effect on ownership where women are more likely to be tenant owners and men homeowners. Additionally, we examine how gender gaps in housing outcomes of late-life divorce are affected by the economic position of ex-partners and the cohort in which they were born.


Divorce in old age: Predictors and consequences of late life divorce

Swedish Research Council for Health Working Life and Welfare

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Original title

Splitting up late: housing changes around the time of divorce for older men and women in Sweden

Original language

  • English

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