Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

Household

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A household consists of one or more people who live in the same dwelling and also share at meals or living accommodation, and may consist of a single family or some other grouping of people. A single dwelling will be considered to contain multiple households if either meals or living space are not shared. The household is the basic unit of analysis in many social, microeconomic and government models, and is important to the fields of economics and inheritance. Household models include the family, varieties of blended families, share housing, group homes, boarding houses, houses in multiple occupation (UK), and a single room occupancy (US). In feudal times, the royal Household and medieval households of the wealthy would also have included servants and other retainers.

Contents

Government

For statistical purposes in the United Kingdom, a household is defined as "one person or a group of people who have the accommodation as their only or main residence and for a group, either share at least one meal a day or share the living accommodation, that is, a living room or sitting room".

The United States Census definition similarly turns on "separate living quarters", i.e. "those in which the occupants live and eat separately from any other persons in the building" A householder in the U.S. census is the "person (or one of the people) in whose name the housing unit is owned or rented (maintained);" if no person qualifies, any adult resident of a housing unit is a householder. The U.S. government formerly used the terms "head of the household" and "head of the family" to describe householders; beginning in 1980, these terms were officially dropped from the census and replaced with "householder".

A household is officially defined as follows:

A household includes all the persons who occupy a housing unit. A housing unit is a house, an apartment, a mobile home, a group of rooms, or a single room that is occupied (or if vacant, is intended for occupancy) as separate living quarters. Separate living quarters are those in which the occupants live and eat separately from any other persons in the building and which have direct access from the outside of the building or through a common hall. The occupants may be a single family, one person living alone, two or more families living together, or any other group of related or unrelated persons who share living arrangements. (People not living in households are classified as living in group quarters.)

According to Statistics Canada, since July 15, 1998, "a household is generally defined as being composed of a person or group of persons who co-reside in, or occupy, a dwelling."

Economic theories

Most economic theories assume there is only one income stream to a household; this a useful simplification for modeling, but does not necessarily reflect reality. Many households now include multiple income-earning members.

Most economic models do not address whether the members of a household are a family in the traditional sense. Government and policy discussions often treat the terms household and family as synonymous, especially in western societies where the nuclear family has become the most common family structure. In reality, there is not always a one-to-one relationship between households and families.

Social

In social work the household is a residential grouping defined similarly to the above in which housework is divided and performed by householders. Care may be delivered by one householder to another, depending upon their respective needs, abilities, and perhaps disabilities. Different household compositions may lead to differential life and health expectations and outcomes for household members. Eligibility for certain community services and welfare benefits may depend upon household composition.

In sociology 'household work strategy', a term coined by Ray Pahl, is the division of labour between members of a household, whether implicit or the result of explicit decision–making, with the alternatives weighed up in a simplified type of cost-benefit analysis. It is a plan for the relative deployment of household members' time between the three domains of employment: i) in the market economy, including home-based self-employment second jobs, in order to obtain money to buy goods and services in the market; ii) domestic production work, such as cultivating a vegetable patch or raising chickens, purely to supply food to the household; and iii) domestic consumption work to provide goods and services directly within the household, such as cooking meals, child–care, household repairs, or the manufacture of clothes and gifts. Household work strategies may vary over the life-cycle, as household members age, or with the economic environment; they may be imposed by one person or be decided collectively.

Feminism examines the ways that gender roles affect the division of labour within households. Sociologist Arlie Russell Hochschild in The Second Shift and The Time Bind presents evidence that in two-career couples, men and women, on average, spend about equal amounts of time working, but women still spend more time on housework. Cathy Young, another feminist writer, responds to Hochschild's assertions by arguing that in some cases, women may prevent the equal participation of men in housework and parenting.

Household models

Household models in anglophone culture include the family and varieties of blended families, share housing, and group homes for people with support needs. Other models of living situations which may meet definitions of a household include boarding houses, a house in multiple occupation (UK), and a single room occupancy (US).

History

In feudal or aristocratic societies, a household may include servants or retainers, whether or not they are explicitly so named. Their roles may blur the line between a family member and an employee. In such cases, they ultimately derive their income from the household's principal income.

Historical statistics on housing

Percentage of dwellings with a bathroom in various European countries

According to statistics from Eurostat, the percentage of households in various European countries with access to an indoor WC, bath/ shower, and hot running water on the premises in 1988 were as follows:

Percentage of dwellings in various European countries with certain amenities, according to 1981–82 censuses

Bathroom or shower on the premises:

Belgium: 73.9%

Denmark: 85.1%

Germany: 92.3%

Greece: 69.3%

Spain: 85.3%

France: 85.2%

Ireland: 82.0%

Italy: 86.4%

Luxembourg: 86.2%

Netherlands: 95.9%

Portugal: 58.0%

United Kingdom: 98.0%

Internal WC:

Belgium: 79.0%

Denmark: 95.8%

Germany: 96.0%

Greece: 70.9%

France: 85.4%

Ireland: 84.5%

Italy: 87.7%

Luxembourg: 97.3%

Portugal: 58.7%

United Kingdom: 97.3%

Central heating on the premises:

Denmark: 54.6%

Germany: 70.0%

Spain: 22.5%

France: 67.6%

Ireland: 39.2%

Italy: 56.5%

Luxembourg: 73.9%

Netherlands: 66.1%

According to statistics from the World Bank and the Economic Commission for Europe (UN), the average usable floorspace of dwellings in existence in 1976 in various countries were as follows:

Average useful floor space (m2) per dwelling in selected European countries (Source: European Commission, 1994):

Percentage of households without modern amenities (Source: Living Conditions in OECD Countries, 1986)

Note: The Japanese and European data is from a 1980 census.

Percentage of households lacking an indoor flush toilet:

Percentage of households lacking a fixed shower or bath:

Floor space in selected countries (1992–1993)

Basic amenities in British and German housing:

Households with an exclusive use of an inside WC:

Britain:

(1961) 87%

(1971) 88%

(1979) 95%

Germany:

(1960) 64%

(1970) 85%

(1978) 92.5%

Households with a bath or shower:

Britain:

(1961) 72%

(1971) 91%

(1979) 94.3%

Germany:

(1960) 51%

(1970) 82%

(1978) 89.1%

Percentage of principle residences in France lacking certain amenities:

1962:

No running water in dwelling: 21.6%

No W.C. in dwelling: 59.5%

No bath or shower in dwelling: 71.1%

No central heating: 80.7%

1968:

No running water in dwelling: 9.2%

No W.C. in dwelling: 45.2%

No bath or shower in dwelling: 52.5%

No central heating: 65.1%

1975:

No running water in dwelling: 2.8%

No W.C. in dwelling: 26.2%

No bath or shower in dwelling: 29.8%

No central heating: 46.9%

1978:

No running water in dwelling: 1.3%

No W.C. in dwelling: 20.9%

No bath or shower in dwelling: 22.9%

No central heating: 39.7%

Percentage of households with central heating:

Percentage of dwellings in the United States with selected amenities (1970):

Basic amenities in the housing stock of East Germany:

1961

Running water: 66.0%

Interior WC: 33.0%

Bath or shower: 22.4%

Central heating: 2.5%

1971:

Running water: 82.2%

Interior WC: 41.8%

Bath or shower: 38.7%

Central heating: 10.6%

1979:

Running water: 89.0%

Interior WC: 50.0%

Bath or shower: 50.0%

Central heating: 22.0%

Percentage of dwellings in various European countries equipped with basic facilities (1970–71):

Austria:

Piped water: 84.2%

Lavatory: 69.8%

Fixed bath or shower: 52.9%

Belgium:

Piped water: 88.0%

Lavatory: 50.4%

Fixed bath or shower: 47.8%

Czechoslovakia:

Piped water: 75.3%

Lavatory: 49.0%

Fixed bath or shower: 58.6%

Denmark:

Piped water: 98.7%

Lavatory: 90.3%

Fixed bath or shower: 76.5%

Finland:

Piped water: 72.0%

Lavatory: 61.4%

Greece:

Piped water: 64.9%

Lavatory: 41.2%

Fixed bath or shower: 35.6%

Hungary:

Piped water: 36.1%

Lavatory: 27.2%

Fixed bath or shower: 31.7%

Ireland:

Piped water: 78.2%

Lavatory: 69.2%

Fixed bath or shower: 55.4%

Italy:

Piped water: 86.1%

Lavatory: 79.0%

Fixed bath or shower: 64.5%

Netherlands:

Lavatory: 80.8%

Fixed bath or shower: 81.4%

Norway:

Piped water: 97.5%

Lavatory: 69.0%

Fixed bath or shower: 66.1%

Portugal:

Piped water: 47.8%

Lavatory: 33.7%

Fixed bath or shower: 32.6%

Spain:

Piped water: 70.9%

Lavatory: 70.9%

Fixed bath or shower: 46.4%

Sweden:

Piped water: 97.4%

Lavatory: 90.1%

Fixed bath or shower: 78.3%

Switzerland:

Lavatory: 93.3%

Fixed bath or shower: 80.9%

United Kingdom:

Lavatory: 86.3%

Fixed bath or shower: 90.7%

Yugoslavia:

Piped water: 33.6%

Lavatory: 26.2%

Fixed bath or shower: 24.6%

Housing Conditions in Great Britain: percentage of all households possessing and lacking certain amenities:

Percentage of all households entirely without certain amenities:

1951:

Fixed bath: 37.6%

Internal or external WC: 7.7%

1961:

Fixed bath: 22.4%

Internal or external WC: 6.5%

Hot water tap: 21.8%

1966:

Fixed bath: 15.4%

Internal or external WC: 1.7%

Internal WC: 18.3%

Hot water tap: 12.5%

1971:

Fixed bath: 9.1%

Internal or external WC: 1.1%

Internal WC: 11.5%

Hot water tap: 6.5%

Percentage of all households sharing certain amenities:

1951:

Fixed bath: 7.5%

Internal or external WC: 14.9%

1961:

Fixed bath: 4.4%

Internal or external WC: 6.7%

Hot water tap: 1.8%

1966:

Fixed bath: 4.1%

Internal or external WC: 6.4%

Internal WC: 4.4%

Hot water tap: 2.0%

1971:

Fixed bath: 3.2%

Internal or external WC: 4.1%

Internal WC: 3.1%

Hot water tap: 1.9%

Proportion of households in the United States of America possessing certain durable goods:

Washing machine (1965): 87.4%

Washing machine (1970): 92.1%

Refrigerator (1965): 99.5%

Refrigerator (1970): 99.8%

Television (1965): 97.1%

Television (1970): 98.7%

Telephone (1965): 85.0%

Telephone (1970): 92.0%

Proportion of households in the United Kingdom possessing certain durable goods:

Washing machine (1964): 53.0%

Washing machine (1971): 64.3%

Refrigerator (1964): 34.0%

Refrigerator (1971): 68.8%

Television (1964): 80.0%

Television (1971): 91.4%

Telephone (1964): 2.20%

Telephone (1971): 37.8%

Proportion of households in Scotland possessing certain durable goods:

Washing machine (1971): 65.0%

Refrigerator (1971): 53.2%

Television (1971): 92.1%

Telephone (1971): 36.1%

Proportion of households in Northern Ireland possessing certain durable goods:

Washing machine (1971): 45.4%

Refrigerator (1971): 40.1%

Television (1971): 87.5%

Telephone (1971): 27.0%

Proportion of households in the EEC possessing certain durable goods (1963–1964):

Manual workers (1963–64)

West Germany

Washing machine: 66.2%

Refrigerator: 62.1%

Television: 51.3%

Telephone: 1.8%

France

Washing machine: 39.6%

Refrigerator: 47.0%

Television: 34.4%

Telephone: 1.4%

Italy

Washing machine: 13.6%

Refrigerator: 50.2%

Television: 47.9%

Telephone: 20.0%

Netherlands

Washing machine: 80.4%

Refrigerator: 25.5%

Television: 58.0%

Telephone: 9.4%

Belgium

Washing machine: 74.7%

Refrigerator: 24.9%

Television: 47.6%

Telephone: 8.2%

Luxembourg

Washing machine: 82.3%

Refrigerator: 64.7%

Television: 27.9%

Telephone: 23.0%

White collar workers (1963–64)

West Germany

Washing machine: 62.2%

Refrigerator: 79.1%

Television: 51.8%

Telephone: 19.6%

France

Washing machine: 48.2%

Refrigerator: 71.3%

Television: 43.3%

Telephone: 15.2%

Italy

Washing machine: 38.3%

Refrigerator: 81.9%

Television: 79.3%

Telephone: 57.9%

Netherlands

Washing machine: 73.9%

Refrigerator: 51.6%

Television: 56.2%

Telephone: 57.4%

Belgium

Washing machine: 68.5%

Refrigerator: 57.3%

Television: 48.3%

Telephone: 40.0%

Luxembourg

Washing machine: 82.3%

Refrigerator: 79.2%

Television: 25.2%

Telephone: 67.3%

Proportion of dwellings in selected countries with certain amenities (1960–71):

West Germany

Inside piped water supply: 98.2% (1965)

Flush toilet: 83.3% (1965)

Fixed bath or shower: 64.3% (1965)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 99.0% (1968)

Flush toilet: 86.5% (1968)

Fixed bath or shower: 66.8% (1968)

France

Inside piped water supply: 77.5% (1962)

Toilet of any type: 43.1% (1962)

Flush toilet: 39.3% (1962)

Fixed bath or shower: 28.0% (1962)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 92.8% (1968)

Inside piped water supply: 91.5% (1968)

Toilet of any type: 56.2% (1968)

Flush toilet: 53.2% (1968)

Fixed bath or shower: 48.9% (1968)

Italy

Inside or outside piped water supply: 71.6% (1961)

Inside piped water supply: 62.3% (1961)

Toilet of any type: 89.5% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 28.9% (1961)

Netherlands

Inside or outside piped water supply: 89.6% (1956)

Toilet of any type: 99.9% (1956)

Flush toilet: 67.5% (1956)

Fixed bath or shower: 26.8% (1956)

Belgium

Inside or outside piped water supply: 76.9% (1961)

Toilet of any type: 99.9% (1961)

Flush toilet: 47.6% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 24.3% (1961)

Luxembourg

Inside or outside piped water supply: 98.8% (1960)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1960)

Flush toilet: 81.6% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 45.7% (1960)

Denmark

Inside piped water supply: 92.9% (1960)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1960)

Flush toilet: 83.6% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 48.3% (1960)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 96.7% (1965)

Inside piped water supply: 96.7% (1965)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1965)

Flush toilet: 90.9% (1965)

Fixed bath or shower: 63.4% (1965)

Sweden

Inside piped water supply: 90.0% (1960)

Flush toilet: 76.2% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 61.0% (1960)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 95.2% (1965)

Inside piped water supply: 94.3% (1965)

Toilet of any type: 99.7% (1965)

Flush toilet: 85.3% (1965)

Fixed bath or shower: 72.9% (1965)

Norway

Inside or outside piped water supply: 94.0% (1960)

Inside piped water supply: 92.8% (1960)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1960)

Flush toilet: 57.9% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 45.2% (1960)

Finland

Inside or outside piped water supply: 47.1% (1960)

Inside piped water supply: 47.1% (1960)

Flush toilet: 35.4% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 14.6% (1960)

Poland

Inside or outside piped water supply: 39.1% (1960)

Inside piped water supply: 29.9%% (1960)

Toilet of any type: 26.9% (1960)

Flush toilet: 18.9% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 13.9% (1960)

Inside piped water supply: 46.8% (1966)

Flush toilet: 33.3% (1966)

Bulgaria

Inside or outside piped water supply: 28.5% (1965)

Inside piped water supply: 28.2% (1965)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1965)

Flush toilet: 11.8% (1965)

Fixed bath or shower: 8.7% (1965)

Yugoslavia (urban)

Inside piped water supply: 42.4% (1961)

Toilet of any type: 34.5% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 22.5% (1961)

Czechoslovakia

Inside or outside piped water supply: 60.5% (1961)

Inside water supply: 49.1% (1961)

Flush toilet: 39.5% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 33.3% (1961)

East Germany

Inside piped water supply: 65.7% (1961)

Toilet of any type: 33.7% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 22.1% (1961)

Hungary

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1960)

Flush toilet: 22.5% (1960)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 32.5% (1963)

Inside piped water supply: 25.9% (1963)

Fixed bath or shower: 18.5% (1963)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 58.6% (1970)

Inside piped water supply: 36.4% (1970)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1970)

Flush toilet: 32.7% (1970)

Fixed bath or shower: 32.2% (1970)

Romania

Inside or outside piped water supply: 48.4% (1966)

Inside piped water supply: 12.3% (1966)

Toilet of any type: 100.0% (1966)

Flush toilet: 12.2% (1966)

Fixed bath or shower: 9.6% (1966)

Switzerland

Inside piped water supply: 96.1% (1960)

Toilet of any type: 99.7% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 68.8% (1960)

Austria

Inside or outside piped water supply: 100.0% (1961)

Inside piped water supply: 63.6% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 29.6% (1961)

Inside piped water supply: 85.3% (1970)

Toilet of any type: 69.7% (1970)

Fixed bath or shower: 54.5% (1970)

England and Wales

Inside piped water supply: 98.7% (1961)

Flush toilet: 93.4% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 78.7% (1961)

Flush toilet: 98.2% (1966)

Fixed bath or shower: 85.1% (1966)

Scotland

Inside or outside piped water supply: 94.0% (1961)

Flush toilet: 92.8% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 69.9% (1961)

Flush toilet: 95.7% (1966)

Fixed bath or shower: 77.4% (1966)

Ireland

Inside or outside piped water supply: 57.2% (1961)

Inside piped water supply: 51.0% (1961)

Toilet of any type: 64.9% (1961)

Flush toilet: 53.5% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 33.2% (1961)

Canada

Inside or outside piped water supply: 89.1% (1961)

Flush toilet: 85.2% (1961)

Fixed bath or shower: 80.3% (1961)

Inside piped water supply: 95.2% (1967)

Toilet of any type: 93.5% (1967)

Flush toilet: 92.5% (1967)

Fixed bath or shower: 89.8% (1967)

Flush toilet: 95.4% (1971)

Fixed bath or shower: 93.4% (1971)

United States of America

Inside or outside piped water supply: 94.0% (1960)

Inside piped water supply: 92.9% (1960)

Flush toilet: 89.7% (1960)

Fixed bath or shower: 88.1% (1960)

New Zealand

Inside piped water supply: 90.0% (1960)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 99.6% (1961)

Inside piped water supply: 87.8% (1961)

Flush toilet: 88.5% (1961)

Inside or outside piped water supply: 99.7% (1966)

Inside piped water supply: 90.3% (1966)

Flush toilet: 94.0% (1966)

Fixed bath or shower: 98.1% (1966)

Percentage of households in selected European countries owning at least one car (1978):

Belgium: 69.9%

Denmark: 57.0%

France: 66.9%

Ireland: 65.1%

Italy: 69.1%

Netherlands: 67.2%

United Kingdom: 54.4%

West Germany: 62.6%

Distributions of the three main kinds of housing tenure in various societies:

Social rented:

Australia (1988): 5% Denmark (1990): 21% France (1990): 17% Germany (1990): 25% Ireland (1990): 14% United Kingdom (1990): 27% Belgium (1986): 6% Italy (1990): 5% Netherlands (1988): 43% Spain (1989): 1% United States (1980): 2%

Private rented:

Australia (1988): 25% Denmark (1990): 21% France (1990): 30% Germany (1990): 38% Ireland (1990): 9% United Kingdom (1990): 7% Belgium (1986): 30% Italy (1990): 24% Netherlands (1988): 13% Spain (1989): 11% United States (1980): 32%

Owner-occupied:

Australia (1988): 70% Denmark (1990): 58% France (1990): 53% Germany (1990): 37% Ireland (1990): 78% United Kingdom (1990): 66% Belgium (1986): 62% Italy (1990): 64% Netherlands (1988): 44% Spain (1989): 88% United States (1980): 66%

Percentage of wage-earners’ households in various European Common Market countries owning a garden (1963–64):

France: 47%

Netherlands: 21%

Belgium: 58%

Italy: 17%

Luxembourg: 81%

Germany: 45%

Percentage of households owning certain durable goods in 1962:

France

Television: 25% Vacuum cleaner: 32% Washing machine: 31% Refrigerator: 37% Car: 33%

Great Britain

Television: 78% Vacuum cleaner: 71% Washing machine: 43% Refrigerator: 22% Car: 30%

United States

Television: 87% Vacuum cleaner: 75% Washing machine: 95% Refrigerator: 98% Car: 75%

Historical housing conditions in Belgium

A survey carried out by the National Housing Institute in 1961/62 estimated that out of all the dwellings in Belgium 13.8% were unfit and incapable of improvement, 19.5%, although unfit, showed potential for improvement, and 54% were considered to be suitable (without alteration or improvement) for modern living standards. 74% lacked a shower or bath, 19% had inadequate arrangements for sewage disposal, 3.6% lacked a proper supply of drinking water, and only 36.8% had an internal W.C. According to an earlier study from 1964, 13% of total housing in Belgium was considered to be made up of slums.

Postwar housing conditions in France

Between 1954 and 1973, the proportion of homes with shower or bath increased from 10% to 65, % while during that same period the percentage of homes without flushing lavatories fell from 73% to 30% and those without running water from 42% to 3.4%. A 1948 law permitted gradual long-term rent rises for existing flats, on condition that part of the money was spent on repairs. According to John Ardagh, the law, “vigorously applied, was partly successful in its twofold aim: to encourage both repairs and new building.”

Postwar housing conditions in the United Kingdom

During the postwar period, a very high proportion of British housing came in the form of single-family housing. In 1961, 78% of all British housing consisted of single-family homes, compared with 56% in the Netherlands, 49% in West Germany, and 32% in France. In terms of housing conditions, in 1964 in England and Wales 6.6% of accommodation units consisted of 2 rooms or less, 5.8% had 7 rooms or more, 15.2% had 6 rooms, 35.1% had 5 rooms, 26.3% had 4 rooms, and 11.1% had 3 rooms. These figures included kitchens only where they were used for eating meals. In terms of the number of bedrooms available in accommodation units in 1964 some 50% had 3 bedrooms, 1.9% had 5 or more bedrooms, 6.2% had 4 bedrooms, 10.5% had 1 or no bedrooms, and 31.3% had 2 bedrooms. A 1960 Social Survey estimated that 0.6% of households in England and Wales fell below the statutory overcrowding standard, and 0.5% in 1964. In 1964 the number of persons per room where households contained at least one person per room stood at 6.9% of all households, while in 1960 some 11% of all households fell below the bedroom standard, with 1.75% having 2 or more bedrooms less than the standard and 9.25% having one bedroom less than the standard. By 1964, however, this had declined slightly to 9.4% of households falling below this standard, with 8.1% having one bedroom less than the standard and 1.3% having 2 bedrooms or more less than the standard. According to local authority returns in 1965, 5% of the total housing stock in England and Wales was unfit.

Housing conditions in Canada and the United States of America

Various improvements took place in housing condition in both Canada and the USA in the years following the end of the Second World War. In the USA, 35.4% of all dwellings in 1950 did not have complete plumbing facilities, a proportion that fell to 16.8% in 1960 and to 8.4% in 1968. In Canada, from 1951 to 1971, the proportion of dwellings with a bath or shower went up from 60.8% to 93.4% and those with piped hot and cold water from 56.9% to 93.5%. In the United States, from 1950 to 1974, the percentage of housing without full plumbing fell from 34% to 3%, while during that same period the percentage of the total housing stock estimated to be dilapidated fell from 9% to less than 4%.

References

Household Wikipedia


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