This report delivers a comprehensive account of the diverse housing circumstances of Australians at mid-life (35–54); elicits their housing aspirations and trade-offs; examines housing challenges and enablers; and ‘market tests’ future housing possibilities, including among vulnerable populations, to inform optimal policy development, via an integrated suite of innovative mixed-method analyses.
- ‘Housing aspirations’ and ‘housing aspiration gaps’ provide a framework for assessing how well the current living arrangements of Australians at mid-life, aged 35–54 years, meet shelter and non-shelter priorities at this life stage and support aspirational futures. This approach informs us about ‘what could be’.
- Housing aspirations are made in the context of social, cultural, locational and policy contexts and are influenced by normative opportunities and life stage priorities and experiences including family care, recovery from disruptive critical life events and consolidation of housing, income and wealth for housing and long-term futures.
- For those experiencing a housing aspirations gap at mid-life, impacts on this life stage are: financial compromises/paying too much; locational, moving from employment and family/friends; compromising on dwellings (size, quality, safety); as well as wider implications for a small proportion of households, such as delaying childbearing.