samboer, Cohabitants, cohabitation, share of cohabitants, share of married persons, share of single persons, live-in relationshipChildren, families and households, Population



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Key figures

20 %

of the population 45-49 years live in cohabitation.

Proportion of cohabitants in different age groups. Per cent
20-24 years25223023
25-29 years35394039
30-34 years24303137
35-39 years15202431
40-44 years10162022
45-49 years8111620
50-54 years681017
55-59 years47814
60-69 years3468
70-79 years1224

See more tables on this subject

Table 1 
Proportion of cohabitants, married and single by age. Per cent. Males and females.

Proportion of cohabitants, married and single by age. Per cent. Males and females.
Cohabitation, sex, age199619971998199920002001200220032004200520062007200820092010201120122013201420152016
16-19 years011121221111331112231
20-24 years171717171114271918252324212419182118222015
25-29 years353738393536374043373940372933413140363734
30-34 years303129323733333731293137302828363437344138
35-39 years232022232219272627252426282631282931333629
40-44 years101321151421152217241923192322192024222025
45-49 years8111112139141814181716202117212420162122
50-54 years89101171011141591210111516131619171816
55-59 years765967107128111011911121412171521
60-69 years34563675677785768991110
70-79 years222331236234424467574
16-19 years275766447847546421532
20-24 years343533322931353532363837363032343229302430
25-29 years393637423841394840454139443951413445494337
30-34 years232327282726313335322830343233383338344033
35-39 years111618181520222227222425242625292827312430
40-44 years12913151516161517191918202020261925202125
45-49 years998111212121413131416212017211820202122
50-54 years56679611998121091511121416132213
55-59 years366647675848871179910910
60-69 years222524523346547559477
70-79 years111111122323223331222
16-19 years1............1......1..00000000
20-24 years333122442321132225121
25-29 years221518151715141816161516111921121612171817
30-34 years454044423637373637364544414345283034373232
35-39 years595956555354484944534951495049524746484447
40-44 years736862656456615460565856525563656351555953
45-49 years747371706871706764606465555657585756615655
50-54 years747477767672696770717168696666696758625955
55-59 years797981777276777572747370757375706871636460
60-69 years817779748178767979757571777772767475717170
70-79 years767374766974757972777871778074787476767375
16-19 years010110010110..10000000
20-24 years877846584675757646334
25-29 years292930303125292426232730232721212820281519
30-34 years595653485349504346414847494252404243453842
35-39 years726663606559565856565854565457575056535353
40-44 years707668626462636461596059616259526655575753
45-49 years707373717267696358636162615655536161565953
50-54 years776969717272697066646470676060666158575560
55-59 years767074697571757462696770696161686471616264
60-69 years667070686865606470676461686569716562686267
70-79 years444642504243515342504749535647465559545451
16-19 years999999999899989799999998979899999998989799
20-24 years808082878469768072757529777379807777777984
25-29 years434844464848484241474645525245465347474548
30-34 years252927262730292732352420292827363629292730
35-39 years172122232527252529222724232421192423202125
40-44 years161817192223232423202321292315161724232122
45-49 years181617181919171623222019252327212023232323
50-54 years181612131718191815201722202019171723212329
55-59 years151514152217141716181620141814181717212120
60-69 years161916201615181615181922151821181816191820
70-79 years222524212825231822211925191822182117191921
16-19 years989295929394969593919693959594969899959798
20-24 years585860606763635864585558576562616566677366
25-29 years323533283134332934323231333428383936234244
30-34 years182220242025202419272424162615212620212324
35-39 years161819232020222017221722202018152218172317
40-44 years181519232123192121222123201821221620232123
45-49 years211819171621192329252523182428272019242025
50-54 years182624231921202124282420232529222527302427
55-59 years212420252122192033232923243228262720282826
60-69 years322828263031353426303233263124242929283126
70-79 years555457495755484657475148454251514340444447

About the statistics

Percentage of cohabitants in the population aged 16-79 years.


Definitions of the main concepts and variables

The statistics is based on a sample of all persons between 16-79 years who was resident in Norway according to the population register.

Two persons who lives in the same residence and is married to each other, registered partners or cohabiting is counted as a couple.

Standard classifications

Not relevant.

Administrative information

Name and topic

Name: Cohabitants
Topic: Population

Responsible division

Division for Population Statistics

Regional level


Frequency and timeliness

Every third year

International reporting

Not relevant


Files on individual level containing data that are processed and stored in the long term.


Background and purpose

The statistics is based on surveys and place of usual residence for women and men aged 16-79 years. It shows proportions of cohabitants, married and singles in different age groups. The first figures published are from 1977 for women and 1988 for men. Since 1993 annual figures have been published.

Users and applications

The statistics have a wide range of users and applications, including institutes involved in researching demographics and living conditions, public administration, the mass media and private persons.

Equal treatment of users

Not relevant

Coherence with other statistics

The statistics is based on a survey and whether a person is defined as a cohabitant or not depends on what answer the person himself gives to this question. In register based statistic one must be registered on the same legal residence address to be defined as cohabitants. Experience shows that statistics based on registers and legal residence address result in fewer cohabiting couples than statistics from surveys based on interviews and place of usual residence.

Families and households

Legal authority

Statistics Act, §§ 2-1, 2-2, 3-2

EEA reference

Not relevant



The statistics cover a sample of the Norwegian population in the age group 16 - 79 years.

Data sources and sampling

The sources for this statistics are the Population register in combination with the Travel survey.

The Travel survey  is carried out among 8 000 Norwegians between 16 and 79 years of age, according to Statistics Norway's standard sampling procedure.

Collection of data, editing and estimations

Interview (telephone)/CATI

A computer is used during the interview. The interviewer reads the questions aloud from the screen and the answers are registered instantly. This allows the data to be controlled immediately, and it reduces the risk of asking the interviewee wrong questions.

The proportion of cohabitants in an age group is estimated by the number of people in an age group who have answered that they are cohabitants compared to everyone who has answered the questions on relationship status in the same age group. The proportion who are married/not in a relationship are calculated in the same way.

The total number of cohabitants is estimated by multiplying the estimated proportion of cohabitants in an age group by the mean population in the same age group.

Seasonal adjustment

Not relevant


Not relevant.

Comparability over time and space

From 2005 data from Statistics Norway's Travel survey has been used. Former sources have been the Fertility survey 1977, Family and Occupation Survey 1988 and Omnibus Surveys 1993-2004. The questions have been the same in all surveys. It is expected that use of data from different surveys do not influence the comparability in the time series.

Accuracy and reliability

Sources of error and uncertainty

Collection errors, like when the interviewee gives incorrect information, or processing errors, like when the interviewer registers the answer incorrectly, are tried kept to a minimum by automatically controlling the answers during the interview. Nevertheless, there may still be some errors left. The number and kind of errors are not known.

The unit non-response has inceased somewhat over the years, and is approximately 40 per cent. Non-response errors are errors caused by unit non-response, i.e. that the unit (for instance an individual or a company) has failed to respond, or item non-response, i.e. that the unit has failed to respond to some but not all the questions in the survey.

Sampling bias may arise when the distribution of some variables in the sample is not the same as the corresponding distribution in the population. The results in this survey are based on the information provided by those responding. Non-response is mainly due to the interviewee not wanting to participate or that he/she was not reached by the interviewer. If the interviewee was not reached due to he/she being on holiday, the distribution of this variable among those interviewed and the non-respondents may differ and sampling bias may arise.

The Travel survey is carried out among a sample of persons resident in Norway between 16 and 79 years of age. The uncertainty of findings based on only a part of the population, (sampling variance) depends among other factors on the number of observations in the sample and on the distribution of the current variable in the whole population. An estimate of this uncertainty (standard deviation) can be constructed by means of the observations in the sample. There is not made an exact calculation of the standard deviation for this survey.


Not relevant


Fact sheet