More Census Stuff: Relationships, marriage and divorce in Australia

The census helps us understand the changing demographics of Australia.

The government and big business use it to help their forward planning and so should property investors.

Demographers have been doing a great job unpacking the huge amount of data available.

They recently produced some interesting insights into how relationships are tracking.

Marriage status changes

According to the ABS, the median age at first marriage in 2015 was 30.1 years for males and 28.5 years for females. Wedding 1353829 1920

This compares to 1974 where it was estimated to be 23.3 for males and 20.9 for females.

The 2016 Census shows that marriage is becoming less common. 

In 2016, 35.0% of all Australians 15 years and over had never been married, compared to 34.3% in 2011.

Nearly every age bracket up to 65-69 years of age had a higher proportion of residents in the ‘never been married’ bracket compared to 2011.

The anomaly is the 30-34 year age bracket where proportions were basically the same.

This could be due to the influx of new migrants in their late 20s/early 30s who are typically more likely to be married than Australian born residents.

Percentage Age Groups Never MarriedWhat about divorce rates? 

Contrary to popular belief  the Census shows that there has only been a marginal increase in those divorced or separated, 11.7% versus 11.5%.

However, it appears for those nearing retirement or already retired, the likelihood of being divorced has increased.

Maybe it’s a case of living longer, growing apart over time?

Percentage Age Group DivorcedRead more at — Where is the love? Relationship status, marriage and divorce in Australia


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Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who help their clients grow, protect and pass on their wealth through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's once again been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and one of Australia's 50 most influential Thought Leaders. His opinions are regularly featured in the media. Visit

'More Census Stuff: Relationships, marriage and divorce in Australia' have 1 comment


    December 12, 2017 Greg Allen

    The separation and divorce rates depend on the demographic factors. The landscape is considerably differing with influx of other nationals who have migrated to Australia. Excellent post to understand the important factors affecting marriage and divorce in Australia.


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