More Homeowners Living With a Roommate

Living with a roommate isn’t a trend only among renters, nor is it limited to families living in multigenerational homes. The latest U.S. Census Bureau data reveals a growing number of adults who are living with other adults with whom they are not in romantic partnerships.

The trend increased after the last recession, and “nearly a decade later, the prevalence of shared living has continued to grow,” according to a new analysis of census data by the Pew Research Center. It was initially driven by millennials who moved back in with their parents. But the longer-term increase has been driven by parents moving in with their adult children or friends and roommates moving in together to share the costs of a mortgage or rent.

Nearly 79 million adults—or 32 percent of the U.S. population—lived in a shared household in 2017. A shared household is defined as a one with at least one extra adult who is not the head of household, a spouse or unmarried partner of the head, or an 18- to 24-year-old student. For comparison, in 1995, 55 million adults—or 29 percent of the population—lived in a shared household, according to Pew Research.

However, millennials living with their parents is still a popular trend. A separate Pew report in 2016 found that for the first time in 130 years, American adults ages 18 to 34 were more likely to be living in their parents’ home than living with a spouse or partner. Pew says that dating back to 1880, the most common living partner was a romantic one.

Source: “More Americans Are Living With People Who Are Not Their Family,” MarketWatch (Feb. 4, 2018)