The changing face of Australian families

The traditional family looks different to what it did a few decades ago

The traditional family with mum, dad and a few kids1 where couples were married before living together is a thing of the past. Now de facto, same-sex couples, step-families, single-parents and blended families are more common in Australia2.

Australian families over the years

  • Couples are living together longer before taking their vows (from 72 to 78 per cent 10 years ago) and civil ceremonies have almost doubled since 1991 (from 38 per cent to 70 per cent).
  • The number of same-sex couples has increased by 75 per cent to 33,714 (52 per cent male, 48 per cent female) over ten years3, with many couples now sharing child-rearing responsibilities (12 per cent).
  • For the first time, the number of couple-only families with no children (37.8 per cent) is nudging slightly higher than those with dependent children (36.7 per cent)4.
  • There are nearly twice as many blended and step-families than in the 1980s, accounting for around 8 per cent of all Australian family households5.
  • More women are entering or returning to the workforce and the major breadwinner in one of four Australian households is now female6.

Protecting your future and those that matter most

So while the typical family in Australia may look different to what it did a few decades ago, we still face many of the same financial challenges today of earning a living, maintaining a home and protecting those that matter most to us.

How can you ensure you and your loved ones’ financial future is secure in a constantly changing environment? Here are some things to consider:

How we can help

If you’d still like help with getting your finances sorted, speak to your financial adviser. If you don’t have one, you can use our online tool to find an adviser or contact us on 131 267.


1 Source: Boundless. “Family Structures.” Boundless Sociology. Boundless, 08 Aug. 2016. Retrieved 28 Nov. 2016 from

2, 3, 6 AMP.NATSEM Issue 34, Income and Wealth Report Modern Family, The changing shape of Australian families, October 2013

4 AIFS Family Facts and Figures (2013).

5 ABS 2011 Census Table Builder


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© AMP Life Limited. This provides general information and hasn’t taken your circumstances into account. It’s important to consider your particular circumstances before deciding what’s right for you. Although the information is from sources considered reliable, AMP does not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. You should not rely upon it and should seek qualified advice before making any investment decision. Except where liability under any statute cannot be excluded, AMP does not accept any liability (whether under contract, tort or otherwise) for any resulting loss or damage of the reader or any other person.