Home Economics Notes

Family Needs and Resources

Meaning and types of family needs.

Family needs are many but the resources for meeting them are limited. It is therefore necessary to find good ways of managing the resources to meet the varying needs of the family. Before learning how to manage the resources we must be well acquainted with the needs of the family.

Family Needs

Family needs are the things that are essential for the family physical, emotional mental and social health.

Needs and wants – There is a clear cut difference between needs and wants. Needs are basic and essential things for man’s good life while wants are those things you desire even though they are not essential for your health and well being.

Types of Needs

  1. Basic/Primary Needs – these are very important needs in the family which the family cannot do without. They are needed by family members for survival. They are:

            a. Food

            b. Clothing

            c.  Shelter

            d.  Health care

2.         Secondary Needs:These are those things the family wants. They are not as important as the primary needs. This implies that the family can continue to exist without the provision of secondary needs.

Examples of secondary needs are: Pocket money for the family members, extra clothing etc.


  1. How will you differentiate between needs and wants?
  2. Mention 4 primary needs in the family
  3. State the two types of needs in the family

Sub-Topic 2: Meaning, types and characteristics of family resources.

Family resources

These are those things which the family can use to meet their needs and reach their goals. The family has different classes of resources:

  1. Human and 
    1. Non human/material resources

Human Resources

These are the resources which exist within an individual. They are personal to each person. Examples are knowledge, skill, imagination/creativity, energy and time.

Non-human/material resources

  1. Money: This is a very important resource that can be used to get most family needs. Money is used to measure the value of the property we have.
  2. Possessions – These are things owned by the family, which they can be used to achieve some goals family possession could be grouped into
  3. Durable e.g. furniture, houses and appliances and
  4. Consumable possession e.g. food, paper, pen, clothes etc. when these possessions are well managed, they will have longer useful life.

            Other resources the family can use are community and natural resources.

Characteristics of resources

  1. Utility – This mean that the resources can be applied for producing goods and services.
  2. Accessibility – This means that resources must exist in hand or on reserve for goal attainment.
  3. Interchangeability – When a resource is substitute with another, it is said to be inter changeable
  4. Manageability – All resources are to some extend manageable i.e. controllable for the purpose of goal attainment.


  1. What are resources?
  2. How can you classify resources?
  3. Mention 4 characteristics of resources.


Workbook on Home Economics New Concept for Nigeria Jnr. Sec. Schools Bk.1 (ps.35).

Reading Assignment Anyakoha Home Economics for junior sec. 2010 Edition, page 82-86  

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