Parental housing wealth and children’s marriage prospects in China—evidence from CHARLS

Ya Gao, Rob Alessie, Viola Angelini*

*Corresponding author for this work

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We estimate the association between parental housing wealth and children’s marriage prospects in China by drawing data from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Survey (CHARLS). We focus on children aged 16–35 who were unmarried in 2011 and track their marriage outcomes in 2015. Our results show that parental housing wealth acts as a signal for males in the Chinese marriage market, which is characterized by a strongly unbalanced sex ratio. Males are more likely to get married if their parents own high-value houses, especially among rural households. The relationship is not significant for females.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)615-644
Number of pages30
JournalReview of Economics of the Household
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun-2023


  • Children
  • Housing wealth
  • Marriage

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