Forecast: 3.5 million single households in 2030

© Hollandse Hoogte / Ton Toemen
The number of households in the Netherlands is projected to have grown to 8.5 million by the year 2030, from the current 7.9 million. The household forecast anticipates more single-person households in particular, including a large share of elderly persons living alone. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports this on the basis of the household forecast 2018-2060.

(English subtitles available)

From 2030 onwards, the number of households will grow more slowly, to reach an estimated 8.8 million households by the year 2060. This is the most likely scenario as based on the current insights. The number of households may be either higher or lower due to unforeseen changes in living arrangements, such as moving out of the parental home, cohabitation and separation. Uncertainty about demographic developments, for example in terms of immigration, affects the number and composition of households as well. Forecast intervals have been defined to show the degree of uncertainty in the figures. The longer projections go into the future, the greater the uncertainty. In 2060, the number of households is projected to lie somewhere between 8.0 to 9.6 million.

Households, 1 January (x million)
 ObservationForecastForecast interval 95%Forecast interval 67%
1970
19714.002
19724.105
19734.201
19744.295
19754.392
19764.497
19774.59
19784.689
19794.792
19804.904
19815.023
19825.132
19835.232
19845.33
19855.43
19865.539
19875.649
19885.763
19895.872
19905.978
19916.091
19926.198
19936.291
19946.378
19956.454
19966.518
19976.584
19986.655
19996.731
20006.798
20016.868
20026.936
20036.994
20047.045
20057.09
20067.134
20077.179
20087.238
20097.314
20107.397
20117.444
20127.474
20137.513
20147.581
20157.648
20167.718
20177.777
20187.858
20197.9387.789 - 8.1127.862 - 8.024
20208.0077.796 - 8.2557.896 - 8.127
20218.0697.800 - 8.3797.928 - 8.221
20228.1237.807 - 8.4877.956 - 8.301
20238.1777.813 - 8.5867.986 - 8.378
20248.2287.818 - 8.6818.014 - 8.456
20258.2777.819 - 8.7768.045 - 8.521
20268.3247.822 - 8.8628.069 - 8.585
20278.3697.827 - 8.9498.096 - 8.652
20288.4117.838 - 9.0308.124 - 8.704
20298.4517.848 - 9.1088.144 - 8.755
20308.4877.859 - 9.1998.159 - 8.814
20318.5217.860 - 9.2838.165 - 8.869
20328.5527.855 - 9.3378.188 - 8.911
20338.587.854 - 9.3898.196 - 8.953
20348.6047.846 - 9.4718.208 - 9.000
20358.6277.835 - 9.5228.213 - 9.044
20368.6467.823 - 9.5688.221 - 9.082
20378.6627.800 - 9.6198.211 - 9.125
20388.6767.769 - 9.6648.203 - 9.150
20398.6887.743 - 9.7238.192 - 9.175
20408.6987.710 - 9.7798.184 - 9.198
20418.7087.699 - 9.8228.179 - 9.225
20428.7167.673 - 9.8748.169 - 9.254
20438.7237.655 - 9.8938.166 - 9.276
20448.737.646 - 9.9318.153 - 9.303
20458.7377.626 - 9.9528.139 - 9.321
20468.7457.613 - 10.0078.125 - 9.344
20478.7527.603 - 10.0598.117 - 9.373
20488.767.582 - 10.1288.103 - 9.391
20498.7687.564 - 10.1738.091 - 9.420
20508.7767.541 - 10.2368.083 - 9.439
20518.7847.512 - 10.2728.074 - 9.471
20528.7927.489 - 10.2998.065 - 9.495
20538.7997.470 - 10.3328.065 - 9.517
20548.8067.463 - 10.3868.065 - 9.535
20558.8137.447 - 10.4208.057 - 9.542
20568.8197.431 - 10.4648.056 - 9.557
20578.8257.408 - 10.5118.057 - 9.577
20588.8327.394 - 10.5288.050 - 9.597
20598.8387.375 - 10.5528.043 - 9.622
20608.8447.355 - 10.5788.038 - 9.639

Over half a million more households projected for 2030

Between 2019 and 2030, the number of households is anticipated to rise by 550 thousand, mainly single-person households. In 2030, 3.5 million households will consist of one person. This is 406 thousand more than the current number. The number of couples without children will grow by 102 thousand; other types of households will grow below this level.

Households by type (x million)
 2030 (forecast)2019 (provisional figure)
Living alone3.4563.05
Couple without children2.3482.246
Couple with children2.032.022
Single-parent household0.6120.58

More elderly households

The foreseen growth in the number of households will mainly be attributable to the over-65s, as the large post-war generations will reach old age and will also live longer. According to the forecast, the number of households with a reference person aged between 25 and 45 years is expected to increase until 2030 as well. These households consist of the relatively large generations born in the 1990s and shortly after the turn of the century.

In contrast, the number of households with middle-aged people (45 to 59-year-olds) is expected to decrease. These people are from smaller generations who were born after a sharp drop in the birth rate in the early 1970s. Likewise, the forecast projects that there will be fewer households among people in their early twenties in 2030 compared to now. The age at which these people leave the parental home is expected to be slightly higher than in recent years.

Households by age of reference person 1) (x 1,000)
 2019 (provisional figure)2030 (forecast)
150.3990.334
162.0151.648
174.1753.657
1815.02213.09
1930.58327.057
2045.34440.215
2156.19351.522
2267.42259.938
2379.22271.399
2491.81283.099
25101.38396.559
26110.193109.623
27117.308117.979
28122.755124.804
29121.32130.667
30121.872131.073
31123.529131.973
32123.375128.801
33121.615129.018
34120.251129.48
35117.534132.796
36117.591132.498
37119.71133.633
38122.016134.877
39118.527135.506
40118.854130.985
41117.171129.794
42119.292130.694
43120.587129.568
44126.307127.173
45131.113125.479
46142.16122.653
47150.11123.251
48156.692125.782
49160.872127.78
50153.952123.704
51152.922123.863
52153.665121.932
53156.704123.454
54159.124123.965
55156.164129.015
56153.003133.343
57151.234143.773
58147.117150.941
59145.195156.671
60141.34159.877
61137.822152.481
62135.244150.756
63131.206150.811
64129.348152.877
65127.096154.701
66127.179151.509
67122.63147.716
68122.979145.749
69123.912141.027
70127.138139.007
71133.076134.756
72136.494130.679
7396.989127.524
74100.672123.101
7594.883120.332
7686.661117.284
7781.301116.077
7881.312110.32
7976.286108.425
8072.892107.112
8165.183106.835
8261.774108.284
8356.986106.87
8452.40572.297
8547.02170.755
8643.11362.039
8737.42851.949
8832.72944.012
8926.42439.161
9021.78732.173
9116.93426.124
9213.46219.587
9310.05815.204
947.611.257
955.448.105
963.6025.586
972.3823.861
981.4862.447
99+1.8673.748
1) in male-female couples, the male person; in other households, the oldest member

Mainly more elderly people living alone

Nearly three-quarters of the additional households up to 2030 will be single-person households. Again, these will largely include elderly people who are more likely to live alone than the middle-aged. This is mainly the result of widowhood but increasingly more often also due to divorce.

Gender ratio among elderly people living alone more balanced

The number of elderly women living alone exceeds the number of men. Women in particular are facing widowhood, as they have a higher average life expectancy than men and are usually younger than their partner. This will continue in the future. On the other hand, the male-female ratio among elderly people living alone is anticipated to become more balanced. In 2030, 65 percent of them will be female as against the current 69 percent. Due to rising life expectancy, widowhood has shifted to a more advanced age, which means that women, too, form part of a couple until later in life.

The majority of single 25 to 64-year-olds are male, mainly as a result of children moving in with the mother following a divorce, thus forming a single-parent household, while the man forms a single-person household. This situation will be similar in 2030, although there will be more single mothers of an advanced age. This is related to the higher age at which women start having children, but also because young adults remain living at home for a longer period.

Men and women living alone, 1 January
 Men (2019)Women (2019)Mannen (forecast 2030)Women (forecast 2030)
99 years and over30313767682671
98 yrs26810525541613
97 yrs41916708692497
96 yrs662249012523530
95 yrs1025360717944990
94 yrs1385503224486748
93 yrs1822648431898867
92 yrs24138385395611098
91 yrs297710230514714286
90 yrs373212872606117099
89 yrs435215161719919965
88 yrs534218079789021578
87 yrs586819953904624495
86 yrs6564221771056628116
85 yrs7054232651184130799
84 yrs7617246591190730092
83 yrs8232255101769742191
82 yrs8691262571771941055
81 yrs8899263821746338424
80 yrs9950278781747837101
79 yrs10260277691782636126
78 yrs10999280031816635228
77 yrs10935265401909235698
76 yrs11438268601935534782
75 yrs12486279322005534307
74 yrs13372282692054434206
73 yrs12879258742156633961
72 yrs18556343132239833861
71 yrs18168324272321133799
70 yrs17564293462425433810
69 yrs17386278592455033484
68 yrs17839269222561933650
67 yrs17917258012588333174
66 yrs18779259602676332763
65 yrs18758252212722132467
64 yrs19461247732695730947
63 yrs19845246812645529380
62 yrs20910242382651928203
61 yrs21557240112642127361
60 yrs22157235872786127256
59 yrs23098230552713525299
58 yrs23273224002585122902
57 yrs23945219132451920629
56 yrs23853209682251817842
55 yrs24711197332179016073
54 yrs25117189122091214432
53 yrs24940174822078513472
52 yrs24265161002039612637
51 yrs24151149552068512307
50 yrs24241140722074911784
49 yrs25995143152160611704
48 yrs25604132362126811307
47 yrs24374123332088310805
46 yrs23512114892074310799
45 yrs22003104912143010832
44 yrs2151099762187311061
43 yrs2100194592256611378
42 yrs2112394502327811556
41 yrs2084493502331711764
40 yrs2157298222375011970
39 yrs21936100382549912396
38 yrs22962105702588112640
37 yrs22981109832617213023
36 yrs23352115102658713703
35 yrs24120126342773014823
34 yrs25694137012817415469
33 yrs27284150522950316492
32 yrs28647167013080318144
31 yrs30307182803318520343
30 yrs31800204003508522344
29 yrs33872227993721824908
28 yrs36548256103772726500
27 yrs36925276713765928019
26 yrs36892296163704229541
25 yrs36050309253459029420
24 yrs34489319613161428630
23 yrs31219307972861827396
22 yrs27196292352468825596
21 yrs22670267442142224040
20 yrs18271228881639920269
19 yrs12373160031097714266
18 yrs6207782354816819
17 yrs1936185117421554
16 yrs1016704829575
15 yrs98878173
14 yrs
13 yrs
12 yrs
11 yrs
10 yrs

Majority are living together with others

The sharp increase in the number of single-person households may give the impression that the Netherlands is becoming a country of individuals. The majority of people, however, are living together with a partner, children or parents. Around 81 percent of the population are part of a multi-person household, while 18 percent are single. In 2030, over 19 percent of the population will form a single-person household, according to the forecast.

Persons in households (x million)
 2030 (forecast)2019 (provisional figure)
Cohabitant8.7588.535
Child living at home4.6954.625
Person living alone3.4563.05
Parent in single-parent household0.6120.58

Related items