'Boomerang kids' feed trend toward more multi-generational households

Sunday, July 1, 2012 | 6:00 a.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Tough economic times are changing the face of the traditional American household, and a recent Pew Research Center study found that the number of Americans living in multi-generational households jumped 10.5 percent from 2007 to 2009. According to a story from The Associated Press, the trend is likely to continue:

"The number of so-called multi-generational households — where adults are living with their elderly parents or grown children — has jumped since the Great Recession forced Americans to rethink living on their own. Demographic experts say it's poised to rise further as baby boomers age, so-called 'boomerang kids' walloped by the weak job market stay home longer and ethnic groups such as Asians and Hispanics, who are more likely to live with extended family, continue to grow."

The Pew study found that, while the poverty rate is lower for those in multi-generational households, unemployed Americans are much more likely than those with jobs to live with their parents or adult children, or both. 

Generation Y may be more likely than most to follow this trend — one in four 18- to 24-year-olds said they moved back in with their parents, and one in five 25- to 34-year-olds did the same. 

This post is part of the American Next, a special project exploring the hopes, fears and changing expectations of Missouri's next generation in challenging times.

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