11 Reasons Young Adults Live with Parents


Millennial and mom making dinner

Many people think adult children living with their parents is a new idea. But this phenomenon has been going on for years. For example, Generation X was called the boomerang generation because they moved back to their parents’ house. So, millennials moving home isn’t a new idea.

There are many reasons an adult would choose to move back with their parents. But is this the right choice for the adult child and the parents? We’ll explore the numerous reasons adult children are returning home.

Economic Factors Influenced Moving Home

When the COVID shutdown hit, 52 percent of millennials had to move in with their parents. This was mainly due to layoffs. Many millennials were in the hospitality or restaurant industries that had to close. Others were still in entry-level positions and were the first to go.

Although work has resumed and many young people were called back or found new jobs, the damage was done. Once you lose a job, a financial recovery can take months or years.

Besides recovering from lost income, inflation hit. And it hit hard. As of 2023, the cost of goods in the U.S. has risen 16 percent since 2020. But wages have only been increased between 4.1 and 5.2 percent.

This disparity has motivated many adult children to live with their parents. And although there’s been a moratorium on paying back student loans, the future of these payments is still being determined. The average millennial owes between $20,000 and $40,000. Generation Z is paying back between $10,000 and $20,000.

Still Pursuing Education

Some adult children are still pursuing education. Whether they’re in a traditional four-year college or a trade school, it isn’t easy to work full-time and balance studies. Many students still live at home. Some of these students are older.

One thing the shutdown taught a lot of people was that they needed more education to help advance and solidify their careers. Many out-of-work adults returned to school to beef up their resume and earnings potential.

Another article that may help: How to Tell a Woman You Live with Your Parents

Changing Career Development

Entry-level positions are common when you’re first starting your career. The average salary is $40,153 gross. But keep in mind that’s average. The range runs from $26,000 to $56,000 gross. Your region of the country will also affect your salary.

In 2023, you’re grossing $7.25 an hour if you have a minimum wage job. That gives you $15,080 gross annually if you work a 40-hour week.

But these salaries are gross and don’t reflect federal, state and FICA taxes. You also may have an insurance premium. These deductions could significantly reduce your take-home pay. This makes it even more challenging to live independently.  

Housing Market challenges

Rents have been on a rollercoaster ride. In July 2023, the average one-bedroom apartment was $1,500 per month. And that’s average. A one-bedroom in New York will run you about $3,260.

If you earn an average $40,153 salary, 45 percent of your gross income would go toward rent. And that’s not considering your employment taxes. It looks dismal for many people.

Living at home with parents is the only solution for many until they can earn more. Those who want to buy a house often live with their parents to save a down payment. This is often a difficult endeavor with inflated housing prices and high-interest rates.

Housing challenges are high on the list of why young adults are living at home.

Changing Relationship Norms

Many people postpone marriage until they’re in their 30s. Some may never marry. Living independently doesn’t attract them as much as if they had a partner.

Saving money while single is a motivating factor to living with parents.

Cultural Diversity Influences Living Arrangements

Multigenerational living is common among many cultures. The U.S. is a melting pot of cultures. Some, like the Hispanic and Asian cultures, encourage their adult children to live at home until marriage. Others want their married children at home as well.

They differ from their American and European counterparts, who encourage adults to leave.

Another article that may help: Should an Adult Live with Their parents

Supporting Aging Parents

One moral and often practical choice is caring for aging parents, at least being around to do some chores around the house.

This is a perfect scenario if one of your parents is widowed. Your company could help stave off some loneliness. Many seniors fear being alone at night, and your presence offers security.

This could be a quid pro quo arrangement, where you provide them with some care, and they provide you with a home and other support.

Savings and Future Planning

Living at home is a valuable way to build a solid financial foundation. Take the time to plan. Saving is essential, but if you can invest, you may reach your financial goals sooner.

It’s not too early to think about retirement planning. And although money is tight, some ways to build a nest egg exist. Forgo some dinners out and other entertainment. Just eliminating one event per month could give you a little extra to tuck away.

Environmental and Sustainability Considerations

One motivation for multigenerational living is eco-friendly living. When you share a house, you’re also sharing resources. And although utility usage increases, it doesn’t go up significantly. Sharing resources reduces your carbon footprint.

Bridging the Generation Gap

You and your parents may see situations differently. After all, they’re from a different generation. This is an opportunity to really get to know your parents and see the world through their eyes. You might disagree, but it opens your mind up to new possibilities.

Conversely, your parents can get to know you as an adult instead of a child. It’s a different level of understanding and perspective. They can see the change in you and appreciate you more for it.

Psychological and Emotional Well-Being

We mentioned the financial toll that COVID had on young adults. But there was also an emotional toll. Everything that they had worked at and built had disappeared.

The biggest thing they needed from their parents was emotional support. By living with their parents, they received security. Their parents met both physical living needs and psychological needs. A mom or dad’s shoulder is the most comfortable place to have a cry.

Reasons to Move Back Home

There are many reasons to move in with your parents, from finances to emotional support. It’s a common occurrence.

Cherish the time you have living with your parents. Enjoy their wisdom and support. When you get back out there, you’ll have great memories.

Anne Johnson

Anne is both a writer and a Nana. She attended University of Akron and went on to have a career in television sales. She now writes and promotes the multigenerational lifestyle. Currently she resides in South Carolina with her husband, two cats, a horse and fabulous grands.

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