Types of families in Australia

Types of families in Australia

Family type

Latest data

According to the 2011 census, there were 5,584,000 families in Australia. The types of families consisted of:

  • couples without children (37.8%)
  • couples with dependent children (36.7%)
  • one-parents families with dependent children (10.6%)
  • couples with non-dependent children only (7.9%)
  • one-parent families with non-dependent children only (5.3%)


  • the proportion of couples without children has increased (28% in 1976 compared to 37.8% in 2011)
  • one parent families with dependent children has also increased (6.4% in 1976 compared to 10.6% in 2011)
  • the proportion of couples with dependent children decreased (48.4% in 1976 compared to 36.7% in 2011).

View family type source data

Families with children 0-17 years

  • the majority of families with children under 18 years of age in 2012-13 were 'intact' families (73.5%)
  • step and blended families accounted for less than 6.5% of all families
  • almost one in five families were headed by a single parent (19.3%).

View families with children 0-17 years source data

Family projections: 2011-2036

ABS projections Series B, the medium set of three sets of projections on family type from 2006 to 2031 indicate that:

  • couple families with children will decrease from 44.1% in 2011 to 40.2% in 2036
  • couple families without children will increase from 37.9 in 2011 to 41.1% in 2036
  • couple families without children will outnumber couple families with children by 2030.

Family projections: 2011-36 source data

More family facts and figures

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