More Americans Moving In With Relatives To Save Money

With unemployment rates high and the economy still struggling, many Americans have moved in with relatives, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of Census Bureau data. The result: the largest increase in the number of Americans living in multi-generational households in modern history.

The number of Americans living in multi-generational households has been increasing since 1980, but the multi-generational household population truly shot up from 2007 to 2009, increasing from 46.5 million to 51.4 million.

The Pew Research Center reports that:

The current surge in multi-generational households is linked to the economy. The unemployed, whose numbers are growing, are much more likely to live in multi-generational households–25.4 percent did in 2009, compared with 15.7 percent of those with jobs. The ranks of the unemployed swelled by 7.2 million from 2007 to 2009, and the typical spell of unemployment in the Great Recession was the longest in four decades, adding to the financial strain on those without jobs.

In addition to the economy’s impact on household finances, young adults unable to find work probably also pushed up the overall number of Americans moving in with relatives. Many young adults said they moved back in with their parents after living on their own: One-in-four of those ages 18 to 24, and one-in-five of those ages 25 to 34 reported doing so. And at 38 Percent, the number of young adults ages 18 to 29 out of the workforce in 2010 was the highest in nearly four decades, according to a 2010 Pew Research survey.

Fighting Poverty in a Tough Economy, Americans Move in With Their Relatives [Pew Research Center]