The reason more Millennials are moving home is not what you think

Most people believe Millennials move home because they are lazy, unemployed and know that having mom do your laundryis one of the best things ever.

Millennials (aged 23 to 39) have earned the nickname of the Boomerang Generation because a significant number have gone back home to live with their parents after graduating from college and even living on their own and being in the workforce for a few years.

Now, most stereotypes would have you believe that most 20 and 30-somethings that move home do this because they are lazy, unemployed (think Will Ferrell in Wedding Crashers, Step-Brothers and a bunch of others) and know that having your mom do your laundry regularly is one of the greatest things in the world.

But it turns out, that is actually not the reason most Millennials move back into their childhood bedrooms (and curl up in the fetal position.) The real reason is actually even sadder.


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According to a Homes.com survey of over 1,000 Americans who moved back in with their parents, the most common reason Millennials boomerang is because of a divorce or breakup. Cue the sad face emoji. The survey found that good old fashioned heartache was the primary reason for moving back home for 33% of 26 to 30-year-olds, 37% of 31 to 35-year-old and 24% of 36 to 40-year-olds.

Even though Millennials have been labeled as the generation that has killed the divorce rate, it clearly still happens. Plus, even though Millennials are getting married later they are cohabitating with their significant other that they are not married to at higher rates than ever before.

The number of cohabitants in the U.S.  increased by 29% between 2007 and 2016, according to a study from the Pew Research Center. Of those 18 million cohabiting half of them are under the age of 35 AKA Millennials.  Patricia McManus, an associate professor of sociology at Indiana University, told Bustle of this new trend, “Most young adults, most millennials, will certainly live together before marriage,” she said. “It’s become more of a norm with less of a stigma.” In addition to it cutting down on living expenses, it is also a good way to test out whether the relationship is compatible with marriage. And let’s remember, though the breakup may be just as painful, it will still cost less than a divorce (and you can tell your Mommy all about it when you move back home.)

As for the reason across all age groups that many people move back in with their parents is “saving money for a house or purchase” followed by breakups. Joblessness and debt were also other reasons that were cited.

Something else to note is that 45% of those that move back home live in their childhood bedrooms which has gotta be weird. Interestingly,  22%  pay rent to their parents.


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Meredith Lepore|is the Deputy Editor of Ladders and can be reached at mlepore@theladders.com.