Household Structures

A household consists of one or more persons who occupy the same dwelling together and share food. It can also be a single unit of humans or a set of individuals. The household is essential to interpersonal relationships in many modern economic, social and anthropological models, and continues to be central to economic theory and planning. Economists have attempted to organize human households into distinct economic units to obtain comparable estimates of societal expenses and wealth. The concept of the family unit is also an important concept in accounting and in planning family finances.

A households comprises of living quarters such as a house, condominium, apartment or mobile home; a building or structure that includes a home, including attached garages, workshops, and outbuildings; a dwelling or residence built on a land with the usual arrangements for supporting life; a building or structure used by members of a family for living, sleeping or retiring; and any other structure used by a household as a place to live, work, school, or live other activities. A census can be taken from the Statistics Canada website or from the Household Estimates Program, Statistics Canada. A person living in a household has all the characteristics of one of those persons. There are four types of households in modern society: joint family, one household, two households consisting of more than two people.

Joint-Family Households

Joint-family households comprise at least two persons who are related by marriage to each other. They share household responsibilities and live under similar economic conditions. Examples of joint-family households include spouses who live together, parents who are married or divorced, children living with their nannies, and other people related by marriage. A one-household household consists of a person occupying a residential unit usually defined as a dwelling-house or residence. It does not include any bedrooms. Unlike joint-family households, there is no sharing of financial responsibilities among the household members. The housing unit may not have a mortgage on it.

Living in a two-household household involves the husband or wife of the householder being a tenant or co-owner of another dwelling-house or residential unit. In this case, the husband or wife of the householder is the tenant or co-owner of the unit. Other examples of two householders include the husband of the woman of the household and the husband of another person living in the household. A household comprised of more than two persons includes people sharing living quarters or rooms. These households could consist of children or adults. Adults could be tenants or owners of an establishment such as a boarding home or an apartment building. Children could be living in a family foster-care home. Or the children may be staying in a parent’s or grandparent’s home.

Certain Family Households

Some examples of two-person households comprise of parents and their children; adults and their children; siblings or half-siblings living together; and same-age relatives. Examples of multi-householding include one homeowner and his or her spouse or another homeowner and his or her spouse or a sibling or half-sister. In certain family households, two members of the household may share the cooking duties while another performs the job of caring for the rest of the family. In this multi-householding, it is important to note that the age of the oldest member of the household will dictate when the youngest member of the household can qualify for insurance based on his or her age.

Variations in Households Structures

As you can see, there are many variations in household structures. As you decide the type of household you would like to live in. It is important to note that different types of households have different living arrangements. Therefore, before making a decision as to the type of household you would like to live in, it is best to consider your own living arrangements so you would not make a costly mistake. After all, you do not want to go into a multi-household with an insurance policy that does not meet your needs.