Today, multigenerational homes are more common in the United States than in recent years. One of every six Americans currently lives in a multigenerational household. At Generations United, we recognize that sharing a multigenerational home can be beneficial for family members of all ages.
A recent New York Times article titled “You Can Go Home Again” made a big splash. The article addressed adult children moving back in with their parents, and the surprising benefits for both generations.
As a college student, I found the article especially reassuring. The stigma against “moving back home” has fortunately ended. When I transition from school to work next year, I will undoubtedly spend some time under my parents’ roof. While my parents provide my room and board, I can return the favor by making dinner, mowing the lawn, and relieving Mom of dishwashing duty!
And my generation is not the only one moving home. Older adults are moving in with their adult children to save resources in an economic downturn. NPR interviewed families that included grandparents in their household for its program “Family Matters.”
Nicholas McDonald, a young man interviewed for the series, credits living with his mother and grandfather as his reason to stay off the streets. Aging parents also profit from moving in with younger family members by receiving care and a larger social network.
Researchers credit the resurgence of multigenerational households to the financial hardships of the Recession. However, as the economy bounces back, these families are staying together due to more than fiscal reasons. They remain united due to their willingness to help and care for the people they love the most.
For Generations United’s take on the matter, visit our 2011 Signature Report Multigenerational Households in a Volatile Economy and our fact sheet on multigenerational families.
Images courtesy of NPR.
-Written by Annie Cleary. Cleary is a National Academy of Social Insurance intern for Generations United this summer and a student at Miami University of Ohio.