Canadian youth more likely 'to live independently' than Italian, American counterparts
Published Friday, October 21, 2016 11:19AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, October 21, 2016 2:27PM EDT
A new social indicators report has shown that more Canadian youth are likely than their European and American counterparts to leave home and live independently.
In a report recently released by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, data showed that approximately 31 per cent of Canadians between the ages of 15-29 live with their parents.
That’s in contrast to countries such as Italy and Greece, where 81 per cent of youth and 76 per cent respectively, live at home with their parents. In the U.S., 67 per cent of youth in the same age bracket live in the parental home.
OECD said that, notably, Canada and the Nordic countries showed that a “small proportion live with their parents and youth are much more likely to live independently, particularly on their own.”
The report noted that the global recession “appears to have had a small overall impact on the living arrangements of youth” across countries analyzed by the OECD.
France showed a 12.5 percentage point rise in the amount of youth living at home. Countries hit strongly by the financial crisis, such as Italy and Greece, had smaller spikes however, those countries already had a high number of youth living at home prior to the recession.
The data, the report said, appears to suggest that the recession has “delayed” the time that young people transition from their parental home.
The report also found that the average age of those getting married has “significantly increased.”
In 2014, the average age at first marriage across OECD countries had increased from 28 years old to 31 for women, and 31 years old to 34 for men. The average age for first-time marriage is very high in Nordic countries, where couples tend to turn to co-habitation in their long-term relationships, which either postpones marriage or replaces it “as the partnership standard.” In Sweden, for instance, the average age of a woman getting married for the first time in 2014 was 33 and for men it was over 35.
However, in countries such as Israel and Turkey, the average age of women getting married for the first time is below 25 and for men it is less than 28.
According to the report, the average age of Canadian women getting married for the first time is close to 30, while for men, it’s closer to 32.
Andrea Mrozek, a researcher on family issues at Ottawa think tank Cardus, says the data illustrates a recent shift in how Canadians “proceed into adulthood.”
“In the past, the concept of life script guided people through their life: you finish high school, you get married, you have kids and that was something of a standard refrain,” Mrozek said. “That refrain doesn’t exist anymore so the years between leaving home and starting your own family have lengthened.”
Mrozek said there are “really good” reasons for that shift, including many people’s pursuit of further education in their post-adolescent years.