Changing Patterns of Family Life: Lone Person Households



- In 2019, 8.2 million households in the United Kingdom were inhabited by just one person; 29% of total households according to the ONS.

- The number of people living alone has increased by a fifth over the last 20 years, from 6.8 million in 1999 to 8.2 million in 2019.

- The majority of this increase is driven by the growth in the numbers of men living alone, predominantly aged 45 to 64 years old.

Reasons for the Rise in Lone Person Households

- Changing social attitudes to relationships.

- Individualism in society.

- Increased life expectancy.

- Greater acceptance of alternatives to family.

Changing Attitudes to Relationships

- Relationships have changed in the late modern era and people are more flexible in their choice of partners.

- More lone-person households as people wait longer to commit to cohabitation or marriage; they need to find a partner that meets their needs.

- Insecurity of relationships- it is likely that people will become part of a lone person household through a divorce or the end of a relationship. 

Greater Individualism in


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