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Households on the Move

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During the previous year, 13.7 percent of householders living with their own children moved. What may seem surprising is that this rate is higher than for those without kids at home. We also see differences in households with younger children compared to older ones. New statistics released today from the 2013 Annual Social and Economic Supplement of the Current Population Survey allow us to examine these differences and look at a variety of statistics about people who moved in the last year.

The population examined in this blog post is householders in family households between the ages of 15 and 54. Family households must contain at least one other person related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption. What constitutes an “own” child? Own children are defined as the householder’s children (biological, adopted, or step) who are under 18 years old, never married, and live with them.

The left side of Figure 1 below shows mover rates of householders who live with their children and compares them to those who do not. Householders with none of their own children at home moved at a rate of 12.1 percent, while the rate for householders with their own children is 13.7 percent. This information raises additional questions about the age of the child in the household.

Digging deeper, we can separate householders based on not only the presence of their children but also the children’s ages. Householders were most likely to move if they had very young children. Those with children only under 6 have the highest mover rate at 20.5 percent, followed by those with both children under 6 and 6 to 17 at 14.5 percent. Householders with children just ages 6 to 17 were the only group to have a mover rate lower than householders with no children present in the home (10.4 percent). In part, this reflects the ongoing desire of some families to relocate prior to children entering school.

We can also consider the age of householders with children when examining who moved in the last year. Generally, the younger the householder, the more likely they are to move. For example, the mover rate for householders with children under 6 years old varies tremendously by age of the householder. Householders 15 to 24 years old with children under 6 moved at a rate of 38.4 percent, while householders 35 to 44 years old and 45 to 54 years old with children under 6 had much lower mover rates (10.8 percent and 9.6 percent respectively, rates not significantly different from one another). In summary, presence and age of own children impact the mover rate, as does age of the householder.

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