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Family and Household

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Four out of ten Irish households had two or more persons earning an income

Four out of ten (42.3%) of households in Ireland had two or more persons earning an income in 2016, see Figure 3.1 below, while 30.6% of households had only one person earning an income. Just over a quarter (25.6%) of households in Ireland had no earned income in 2016. These households are broken down into households where pension income (private and occupational and/or state pension) was the primary source of income (15.7%) and households where non-pension social welfare was the main source of income (9.9%). The remaining 1.5% of households could not be linked to administrative income, see Background and Methodology for further information.

Figure 3.1 shows that households with two or more earners had the largest share of gross incomes above €60,000, while households with one earner had the largest share in the €20,000 - €40,000 category. Households with no earners were mainly in low income categories.

Income BracketNo incomeNo earners - Social welfare excluding state pensionNo earners - Pension including state pensionOne earnerTwo or more earners
No income1.50000
€1 - €20,00006.26.74.40.5
€20,000 - €40,00003.26.3124.2
€40,000 - €60,00000.41.97.69.2
€60,000 - €80,00000.10.53.59.2
€80,000 - €100,000000.21.46.9
€100,000 - €120,000000.10.64.6
€120,000 - €140,0000000.32.8
€140,000 - €160,0000000.21.7
€160,000 - €180,0000000.11.0
€180,000 - €200,0000000.20.6
€200,000 +0000.31.6

Households with three children had highest household income

Households with three children had the highest median income in 2016 at €68,695, see Figure 3.2. Households with no children had the lowest income at €40,495. Most pensioners fall into this category. 

Number of childrenHousehold median gross income
040494.7
146881.72
261764.35
368695.245
465838.45
559467.19
6+58736.095

Both partners earned an income in more than half of Irish couples

Both partners earned an income in more than half (62.5%) of all Irish couples in 2016, see Figure 3.3. In 28.9% of couples, only one partner earned an income, while for 8.6% of couples neither partner earned any income.

Both earnOne earnerNeither earn
Proportion of couples62.528.98.6

A man was the earner in over two thirds of couples with one earner

In over two thirds (72.3%) of couples with only one earner, it was the male partner who was earning, while in less than a third (27.7%) the female partner was earning, see Figure 3.4.

MaleFemale
Sole earner72.327.7
Figure 3.4 updated to show for couples with one earner, 72.3% the male partner was earning and 27.7% the female partner was earning.

 

A male partner earned more in almost half of Irish couples

A male partner earned more in almost half (46.5%) of Irish couples where both earned an income in 2016. Earnings were spread fairly evenly (both partners received more than 40% of the couples' combined earned income) between 34.3% of couples, while a female partner earned more in 19.2% of couples, see Figure 3.5 and Table 3.1.

Fairly equalMale earned moreFemale earned more
Both earn34.346.519.2
Show Table: Table 3.1: Earnings amongst couples, 2016

Nine out of ten adult children living at home had an income

Nine out of ten (93%) adult children living at home (aged 18 and over excluding retired adults) had an income in 2016, while the remaining 7% had no source of income, see Figure 3.6.

Of those adult children living at home who had an income, their median gross income was €12,525.

No incomeIncome
Adult children living at home793

Adult children living at home working for payment or profit had highest income 

The highest median income for adult children living at home with an income was for those working for payment or profit at €22,487, see Figure 3.7, followed by those looking after the family home (€12,481) and the unemployed (€9,936).

Principal Economic StatusMedian gross income
Working for payment or profit22487.2
Looking after home/family12481.4
Unemployed9935.8
Unable to work due to permanent sickness or disability9935.8
Student or pupil7708
Looking for first regular job7289.6

Link to interactive tables: Statbank

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