Moving Considerations: A Longitudinal Analysis of Parent-Child Residential Proximity for Older Americans

Yiduo Zhang, Michal Engelman, Emily M. Agree

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Residential proximity is an important indicator of family members' availability to provide assistance to each other. We investigate proximity-enhancing moves by older parents and their children and the reasons for such moves. Using the 2000-2004 waves of the Health and Retirement Study, we fit multinomial logit models examining 2-year residential transitions for parents and children living 10 or more miles apart at baseline. Our results show that family members collectively adjust intergenerational proximity to facilitate mutual support. Despite the common assumption that older parents move closer to their children to receive assistance, more than two thirds of all proximity-enhancing moves are made by adult children. While greater anticipated longevity raises the probability that older parents will move closer to their children, parents' anticipated longevity does not influence children's moving decisions. Including individual variability in anticipated longevity in the life course framework helps account for relocation that precedes declines in health or increases in the need for support.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)663-687
Number of pages25
JournalResearch on aging
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2013


  • anticipated longevity
  • caregiving
  • intergenerational relations
  • life course migration
  • residential mobility
  • residential proximity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


Dive into the research topics of 'Moving Considerations: A Longitudinal Analysis of Parent-Child Residential Proximity for Older Americans'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this