This article was edited by Suzanne Bianchi.
Opting Out and Buying Out: Wives' Earnings and Housework Time
Version of Record online: 10 MAR 2011
Copyright © National Council on Family Relations, 2011
Journal of Marriage and Family
Volume 73, Issue 2, pages 459–471, April 2011
How to Cite
Killewald, A. (2011), Opting Out and Buying Out: Wives' Earnings and Housework Time. Journal of Marriage and Family, 73: 459–471. doi: 10.1111/j.1741-3737.2010.00818.x
- Issue online: 10 MAR 2011
- Version of Record online: 10 MAR 2011
- families in middle and later life;
- Health and Retirement Study (HRS);
- housework/division of labor;
- time use;
- wives' employment
It has been proposed that the negative association between wives' earnings and their time in housework is due to greater outsourcing of household labor by households with high-earning wives, but this hypothesis has not been tested directly. In a sample of dual-earner married couples in the Consumption and Activities Mail Survey of the Health and Retirement Study (N = 796), use of market substitutes for women's housework was found to be only weakly associated with wives' time cooking and cleaning. Furthermore, expenditures on market substitutes explain less than 15% of the earnings–housework time relationship. This suggests that use of market substitutes plays a smaller role in explaining variation in wives' time in household labor than has previously been hypothesized.