No Free Lunch, Buddy: Past Housing Transfers and Informal Care Later in Life
55 Pages Posted: 25 Aug 2017
Date Written: June 16, 2017
Previous empirical literature on the relationship between intergenerational transfers of assets and services has mostly focused on contemporary exchanges. In contrast, we provide novel evidence that parents who helped their adult children in the past are rewarded by a greater likelihood of receiving informal care later in life. To this end we use Italian data to look at retrospective information about how parents help their children to purchase houses when they get married. Our estimates show a positive association with the current provision of informal care, which is robust to controlling for a large set of individual and family characteristics. We provide evidence that this can be explained by various self-interest motives, relating to theories based either on bilateral exchange or on the presence of a third generation of grandchildren, such as those including a demonstration effect or the concept of a family constitution.
Keywords: informal care, housing, intergenerational transfers, geographical proximity
JEL Classification: D10, J13, J14
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation