“The growth in one-person households is mainly due to the increasing number of people at older ages,” senior manager Vina Cullum said. “Almost 90 percent of this growth in people living alone will occur among those aged 60 years and over.”
By 2038, 11 percent of New Zealand’s population will be living alone, compared with 9 percent in 2013. Of those living alone, 65 percent are projected to be aged 60 years and over in 2038, compared with 54 percent in 2013.
“Our ageing population will also see more couples living without children,” Vina Cullum said. “Most people will still have children during their life, but beyond the mid-50s they are more likely to be living separately from their children.”
The total number of households is projected to increase from 1.65 million in 2013 to 2.14 million in 2038. Over the same period, New Zealand’s population is projected to increase from 4.44 million to 5.50 million. This would see the average household size drop from 2.6 to 2.5 people. In 1951 it was 3.7 and in 1981 it was 3.0.