Multigenerational Households at Record High

A record 57 million Americans – or 18.1 percent of the U.S. population – lived in multigenerational households in 2012, according to an analysis by the Pew Research Center of the most recent data available measuring multigenerational households. The rate is up from 17.8 percent in 2011 and has risen dramatically. In 1980, for example, only 12.1 percent of the population lived in multi-generational households.

The trend is mostly being driven by young adults who are living at home, the report notes.

“After three decades of steady but measured growth, the arrangement of having multiple generations together under one roof spiked during the Great Recession of 2007-2009 and has kept on growing in the post-recession period, albeit at a slower pace,” according to Pew’s analysis.

For its analysis, Pew defined multigenerational households as having at least two adult generations, such as a parent and an adult child age 25 or older.

Nearly a quarter of young adults – or 23.6 percent – who are between the ages of 25 to 34 lived in a multigenerational home in 2012. That marks more than double the 11 percent in 1980, according to the Pew analysis. Declining employment and wages of young adults is undercutting their ability to live independently. The generation is also marrying at older rates, staying in school longer, and more ethnically diverse.

Source: “In Post-Recession Era, Young Adults Drive Continuing Rise in Multi-Generational Living,” Pew Research Center (July 17, 2014) and “All in the Family Home: Record 57 Million Americans Living in Multi-Generational Households,” The Wall Street Journal (July 17, 2014)

Suevey: Family Households “Get more Crowded”

More generations are sharing one roof, and households will likely only get bigger in the years ahead, surveys show.

Nearly a third of home owners say they expect their adult children and aging parents to eventually move in with them, according to a new survey of more than 1,000 home owners conducted by homebuilder PulteGroup. One in seven of home owners surveyed say they already have an adult child or elderly parent living with them.

Indeed, multigenerational households are at their highest level since the 1950s, according to Pew Research Center.

The higher number of people living under one roof is prompting changes in home designs, builders say. For example, PulteGroup is experimenting with additional master suites in a home — one upstairs and one downstairs — to better accommodate elderly parents who are moving in. Are you seeing this as a trend in your region?

Source: “Who’s Moving In? Adult Kids, Aging Parents,” USA Today (Oct. 16, 2012)