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Do Many Young People Still Live at Home?

Absolutely, a significant number of young adults continue to live at home, often due to economic factors, educational pursuits, or cultural norms. This living arrangement can offer financial relief and familial support. But what does this trend mean for their independence and future financial stability? Explore how this choice shapes their lives and impacts society as a whole. What's your take on this generational shift?

While the coronavirus has caused the forced separation of much of society, it has also brought one demographic back home. According to the Pew Research Center, more Americans ages 18 to 29 are living with their parents than at any time since the Great Depression. In fact, as of July 2020, a whopping 52 percent of that age bracket -- or 26.6 million people -- were living with one or both parents, an increase of 5 percent (2.6 million people) from February.

The trend has affected young men and women of all races and geographic areas. The economic impact of the pandemic hit the 18-to-29 age group particularly hard because it not only shut off job opportunities but also slowed or stopped educational advancement. According to Pew, 23 percent of those who moved back in with their parents said they did so because their schools had closed; 18 percent cited employment loss or lack of job opportunities.

There is no similar data for the time of the Great Depression, but the last time the rate of moving home was recorded at such a high level was 1940, just after the Depression, when 48 percent of young people remained at or returned home.

Moving home or staying put:

  • Before the coronavirus, the top reason cited by most young adults for moving home was the breakup of a relationship.

  • Thirty percent of all young adults who have not moved home are getting some or all of their rent paid by their parents.

  • The average American will move nearly 12 times in his or her lifetime.

Frequently Asked Questions

What percentage of young adults are currently living with their parents?

Currently, more young Americans are living with their parents than at any time since the Great Depression.
Currently, more young Americans are living with their parents than at any time since the Great Depression.

According to data from the Pew Research Center, as of 2021, 52% of young adults in the United States were living with one or both of their parents. This marked a significant increase from past decades, largely influenced by economic factors and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Source: Pew Research Center, July 2021, https://www.pewresearch.org/social-trends/2020/07/29/a-majority-of-young-adults-in-the-u-s-live-with-their-parents-for-the-first-time-since-the-great-depression/)

What are the main reasons young people choose to live at home?

Young adults live at home for various reasons, including economic challenges such as high housing costs and student debt, as well as personal factors like delaying marriage or pursuing higher education. The COVID-19 pandemic also played a role, as job losses and health concerns prompted many to move back in with family. (Source: Pew Research Center, September 2020, https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/09/04/a-majority-of-young-adults-in-the-u-s-live-with-their-parents-for-the-first-time-since-the-great-depression/)

How does living at home affect young adults' financial independence?

Living at home can provide young adults with the opportunity to save money, reduce debt, and potentially invest in their future. However, it may also delay financial independence and the development of financial management skills. The trade-off often involves short-term financial relief at the expense of long-term financial autonomy. (Source: Forbes, August 2020, https://www.forbes.com/sites/jrose/2020/08/18/52-percent-of-young-adults-living-with-their-parents/)

Is this trend of living at home more prevalent in certain areas of the United States?

Yes, the trend of young adults living at home varies by region. For instance, areas with higher costs of living, such as the Northeast and West Coast, tend to have higher percentages of young adults residing with parents. Conversely, regions with more affordable housing options, like the Midwest and South, generally see lower instances of this living arrangement. (Source: U.S. Census Bureau, https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2021/08/young-adults-living-with-parents-during-covid-19-pandemic.html)

Does the trend of living at home differ among various demographic groups?

Indeed, the trend does differ among demographic groups. For example, young men are more likely than young women to live with their parents. Additionally, there are variations across racial and ethnic groups, with Black and Hispanic young adults more likely to live at home compared to their White and Asian counterparts. Educational attainment also plays a role, as those with lower levels of education are more likely to reside with parents. (Source: Pew Research Center, September 2020, https://www.pewresearch.org/social-trends/2020/09/04/a-majority-of-young-adults-in-the-u-s-live-with-their-parents-for-the-first-time-since-the-great-depression/)

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    • Currently, more young Americans are living with their parents than at any time since the Great Depression.
      Currently, more young Americans are living with their parents than at any time since the Great Depression.