Hear ye, hear ye...
According to an analysis of census data by real estate tracker Trulia, almost 40 percent of young adults lived with their parents, step-parents, grandparents and other relatives last year––and that's the highest amount in 75 years.
According to these analysts, there's only been one time in the history of the United States when this share was much higher, and that was in 1940, when the American economy was still gaining a foothold after the Great Depression (This was also one year prior to the country entering World War II, which opened a whole different can of worms, as we know!).
True, the number of millenials who have not left home (or who've chosen to return home) saw an increase prior to the 2008 recession, and it only increased as the economy went into a downward spiral and during a rather rocky recovery period.
Americans are also delaying marriages and starting families, as Cheryl Young, the senior economist at Trulia, pointed out:
Even though unemployment rates have decreased and the economy is picking up, we know wages are stagnant, so this will impact this generation of homebuyers, ”making it more challenging to save for a down payment. The millennials are getting married later and having fewer children, and that’s particular to this generation."
Trulia's research mirrors findings from the Pew Research Center earlier this year, which found that 32.1 percent of 18 to 34-year-olds lived at their parents’ homes in 2014. That's an amount which exceeds the 31.6 percent of young adults who were married or living with a partner in their own household. So much for moving out the second you graduate from high school––what was the norm for many years has effectively been on its way out for many for quite some time.
But low wages, student debt, and sky-high rents (hello, housing crisis) have all dealt a significant blow.
According to Ralph McLaughlin, Trulia’s chief economist,
I don’t think those are challenges that are going to keep young households permanently out of the housing market, but it may keep their homeownership rate near historic lows for likely the indefinite future.
Young weighed in here, too:
For most people who take the traditional trajectory, you might rent, then you are ready to buy a home. But if people are living with relatives, it means they aren’t even able to rent. The rental prices are very high in some urban areas, and those are barriers for people to move out.
According to Pew, millennials also earn less than Generation X did at the same age. Millennial households in 2014 earned a median income of $61,003, compared with $63,365 for Gen Xers in 1998 (adjusted for inflation).
But, young notes, many millennials are still buying homes. Millennials, after all, make up the majority of first time buyers on the market, even when you account for those who live at home. Baby boomers might also find themselves clashing with the younger generation because the world was remarkably different then: in the 1970s, only about 25 percent of others in their age bracket lived at home––close to the lowest share since 1940.