There are certain points in life that are seen as a rite of passage; significant milestones that most people aim to achieve and experience. Listed below are three of the most well-known and common – and every single one of them is being completed later in life than ever before.
Buying a home
There’s no doubt about it; millennials are buying homes later and later in life. In fact, it’s even been predicted that in the next decade, the average age of a first-time buyer will rise above 40 for the first time in history.
The reasons for this are varied and complex, but there’s no doubt that some of the issues go right back to the so-called “Great Recession” of 2007/8. After a decade of easy lending, mortgage providers now require deposits so high they are out of reach of many younger millennials. There is also a competition problem, with fewer houses for sale than ever before; it’s easy to see why there is a societal need for reputable and experienced first home builders who can provide new housing that millennials can actually afford to buy.
Having a child
Women’s fertility begins to decline when they reach the age of 30, and this used to be represented in the statistics of the age of women when they had their first child. The average age of first-time mums has risen in recent years, and the trend looks set to continue.
There are a few factors feeding this, some of which relate to the instability not being able to afford a home causes. Women are also more likely to delay having a child until they have established their career, or are willing to wait for Mr. Right– and the latter point leads us neatly onto…
This issue relates to both of the above points; people are now getting married later in life. The average age of a first marriage has risen to:
- 29.6 years old for men (26.5 years a decade ago)
- 27.9 years old for women (24.3 years a decade ago)
This, too, is a trend that looks set to continue, though the good news is that divorce rates are down – so there might be something to waiting for the right person to come along at the right time in your life.
So what’s going on?
The conclusion is simple: the modern Australian woman feels that she has more time to enjoy her youth and make sound decisions for the future. There is no doubt this is a very good thing, ensuring that these rites of passage are met when women are ready for them rather than because society expects them to comply. Who knows just how different the picture will be for Generation Z?