- The housing careers of younger adults and intergenerational support in Germany’s ‘society of renters’
- Housing Studies
- Volume | Issue number
- 33 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
Through narrative interviews with younger adults and their parents, this paper explores how the housing transitions of younger adults, both within the rental sector and into homeownership, are shaped through intergenerational intra-family support in Germany’s society of renters. Our findings highlight the profound qualitative differences between regular transfers for establishing and retaining residential independence in the rental sector and inter vivos gifts for house purchase. Where the former support type is given and taken unconditionally, transfers for house purchase follow a different logic and carry different meanings. Being a necessary condition for property acquisition at young age, they have the power to completely rebalance family relations and undermine younger adults’ autonomy accordingly. In an aggregate perspective, our study further suggests increasing socio-spatial inequalities within the younger generation which run along both class and spatial origin, sharply dividing the housing market opportunities of ‘original Berliners’ and those who have moved to the city from more affluent regions in Germany.
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