2008 volume 40(11) pages 2770 – 2790
doi:10.1068/a39374

Cite as:
Michielin F, Mulder C H, 2008, "Family events and the residential mobility of couples" Environment and Planning A 40(11) 2770 – 2790

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Family events and the residential mobility of couples

Francesca Michielin, Clara H Mulder

Received 29 November 2006; in revised form 20 June 2007; published online 9 September 2008

Abstract. Using data from retrospective surveys carried out in the Netherlands during the early 1990s, we describe how the residential mobility of couples—that is, short-distance moves—is affected by family events and how fertility is affected by residential mobility. The results show that residential moves are particularly likely to happen in a short period preceding a wedding or during pregnancy, supporting the hypothesis that residential mobility is likely to occur in anticipation of family changes. Anticipation is also suggested by the fact that the likelihood of having a child is greater after a residential move, but only starting from some months after the move. Family events also have a hampering effect on residential moves. Starting from some months after the wedding, being married is associated with a lower propensity of experiencing a short-distance move, while the presence of children is associated with less residential mobility only when children are school-aged.

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