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Census Bureau agrees with parents: Yes, young adults still home

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The U.S. Census Bureau has confirmed what many beleaguered parents already know: More and more cash-strapped young adults are moving back in with their parents, or have never left home

It’s almost certainly the economy -- although the trend began shortly before the 2008 economic meltdown and subsequent recession, according to a family demographic report released today by the Census Bureau.

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From 2005 to 2011, the number of men aged 25 to 34 living in their parents’ home shot up from 14% to 19%. For women in the same age group over the same period, the rate rose from 8% to 10%.

The report did not distinguish between those who never left their parents’ homes and those who moved out but later returned.

‘The increase in 25-to-34-year-olds living in their parents’ home began before the recent recession, and has continued beyond it,’ the report’s author, Rose Kreider, a family demographer with the Census Bureau, said in a statement.

Previous generations of young adults in the same age range were more likely to live on their own while embarking on careers. But with unemployment rates high and career-track jobs tight, more of today’s young adults are saving money by bunking with Mom and Dad.

The rates are even higher for those ages 18 to 24. Fifty-nine percent of men in that age group lived with their parents in 2011, up from 53% in 2005. For women, the rate rose from 46% in 2005 to 50% in 2011.

College students living in dormitories were counted as living in their parents’ homes.

At the same time, the recession appears to be responsible for a slight decrease in the number of mothers staying home to care for children -- presumably because they’re taking jobs to help with strained household budgets. The report said that 23% of married couple families with children younger than 15 had a stay-at-home mother, down from 24% in 2007.

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-- David Zucchino

Photo illustration: Living with the folks may not always be fun, but it can save a lot of money. Credit: Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times


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