Reports 2018/37

Immigrant households, their composition and housing conditions

This publication is in Norwegian only.

Open and read the publication in PDF (1.2 MB)

The subject of this report is the composition and housing conditions of immigrant households. An immigrant household is defined as a household in which all adults have an immigrant background. 867 400 persons with an immigrant background living in a private household on 1 January 2017, 82 per cent belonged to an immigrant household. Out of all persons living in an immigrant household, 2 per cent do not have an immigrant background.

The average size of an immigrant household is somewhat, but not much, larger than other households in Norway, with 2.27 persons per household compared to 2.17. The proportion of one-person households is larger among immigrant households than other households, but the proportion of two-person households is substantially smaller. The proportion of large households is larger among immigrant households.

Persons living in immigrant households are younger on average than persons living in other households. It is therefore natural to assume that the distribution of household types for immigrant households will differ from that of other households. However, there are also differences when we compare households in the same age groups. In all age groups, living alone is more common among immigrant households than among other households. This is partly a consequence of the definition applied. The proportion of one-family households with adult children is smaller among immigrant households than other households. Furthermore, it is more common in all age groups for persons in immigrant households to live in households with more than one family, particularly where these households have no children.

There are substantial differences between households when broken down into country background. For example, households with persons with a Pakistani background who have stayed in Norway for many years are large on average, and are commonly made up of more than one family and children. This means that it is quite common that several generations are living together. Many of the immigrants who have arrived recently from countries with a high proportion of refugees, for example Syria and Afghanistan, live alone or as a single person in a household with more than one family. One reason for this is that many persons from these countries arrive in Norway as unaccompanied minor refugees.

The proportion of households that own their dwelling is substantially smaller for immigrant households than for other households, particularly where household members are from Africa. The difference between immigrant households and other households is largest for single parents with children and households with more than one family and no children. In general, the proportion of households owning their dwelling increases with duration of stay in Norway. Comparisons of households with the same duration of stay show that a larger proportion of households made up of labour migrants own their dwelling than households whose members have a refugee background.

The proportion of immigrant households living in crowded dwellings is much larger than for other households. The largest proportion is found among households from Africa. There are more crowded dwellings in Oslo than in the rest of the country and the difference between immigrant households and other households is largest in Oslo. Large households are more often crowded than small households. The proportion of crowded dwellings is largest among immigrant households with children, particularly among households from Africa.

Read more about the publication