Making the Choice to Leave the Parental Home Among European Young Adults
Katrin Schwanitz, University of Groningen
Up until now, very little research specifically addressed young adults’ decision-making process to leave the parental home. This is unfortunate as young adults’ decision-making processes lie at the heart of life course transitions and quantitative modeling of leaving home events or residential trajectories can tell us little about how young adults plan their departure from the parental home and how choices, young adults’ characteristics, and contextual constraints intersect to shape pathways out of the parental home. This paper aims at understanding how young adults plan their departure from the parental home and how choices, young adults’ characteristics, and contextual constraints intersect to shape pathways out of the parental home in contemporary Europe. For this, I use data from the Generations and Gender Survey (GGS) for 14 European countries (n= 16,736) to map beliefs and influences on leaving home intentions according to a framework provided by the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB). After illustrating how the effects of attitudes, subjective norms, and behavioral control on intention to leave the parental home vary across the countries and background factors in the sample, (1) I consider how background factors might interact with country-level effects (national context) to explain the decision to leave the parental home; (2) I examine whether or not attitudes, norms and perceived behavioral control are simultaneous determinants of leaving home intentions, even when background factors are controlled for; and (3) I examine on which background factors attitudes, norms and perceived behavioral in turn depend.
Presented in Session 120: Transitions to Adulthood