The housing market in Italy and its impact on leaving parental home
Anna De Pascale, University of Rome
Alessandra De Rose, Università di Roma "La Sapienza"
Italy is among countries in Europe with the latest leaving parental home, union formation and parenthood and the lowest fertility level. Housing dynamics and the imperfections of the housing market are often recalled among the factors which delay young people starting an independent housing career and forming unions and families. This hypothesis, although overall accepted and cited while studying young people behaviors, has not been substantiated by a great wealth of empirical research yet. Only recently the attention of the population researchers has been drawn on the strictly interrelationship between partnership and housing dynamics in the European countries. Finding a suitable and affordable housing proved to be particularly hard in those countries where the levels of homeownership is high, and where there is a low access to mortgages and an under-development of the rental sector. Namely, Italy is among those countries with the greatest share of homeowners, the lowest Total Fertility Rates and the highest share of young people still living in the parental home. In this paper, we first describe the Italian housing and financial market conditions with reference to specific data sources; then we perform an individual level analysis of factors affecting Italian young people behaviors and try to understand the role of different housing and family conditions. At this aim, we will refer to the Italian data set of the European Survey EU-SILC (Statistics on Income and living conditions, 2004). We finally focus on the recent attention the policies and the economic developers have drawn on the young people difficulties in entering the labor and the housing market, and on some special mortgage’s loan conditions proposed by important banking groups which could affect the young people attitudes and behaviours.