May 27, 2020 - Economy

Inside the changing millennial home

Reproduced from Pew Research Center; Chart: Axios Visuals

As the first millennials approach 40, the way the generation has defined home continues a decades-long transformation of the stereotypical American family, according to a new analysis by Pew Research Center.

The big picture: For the largest living generation, trends that began with Generation X and Baby Boomers have become the new norm — including living with parents deep into adulthood, sharing homes with partners without marriage, single-parenting and delayed childbirth.

  • Millennial men also are more likely to marry women with more education compared to past generations.
  • And 13% of Millennials married someone of a different race or ethnicity — up from 9% during Gen X's younger years.

Living situations vary significantly by educational attainment, race and ethnicity, the study finds.

  • Among millennials, African Americans are less likely than whites, Hispanics or Asians to live in homes with a spouse and a child.
  • Nearly half of millennial moms without a college education are unmarried, while that's true for only about one in seven with a degree.

The state of play: "The change is really in what we would think of as a traditional family setup," Pew's director of social trends research Kim Parker tells Axios.

  • Unlike previous generations at the same age, a majority of millennials (56%) aren't married. Only 42% live with a child of their own, while in past generations that was true for between half and three-fourths.
  • Meanwhile, a striking 14% still live with their parents. Another 14% live with "other" family members, which includes siblings, grandparents, cousins or unmarried partners. That 28% of millennials living with family is up from 18% for Generation X time and 14% for Baby Boomers.
  • Millennial men without a college degree are particularly prone to living with parents— 21% of them do so.

The bottom line: This trend didn't reverse even as the economy recovered from the Great Recession, suggesting a deeper cultural shift rather than just a temporary economic decision, Parker said.

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